How To Choose a Pest Control Company
When hiring a pest control company, there are several factors you can consider to make sure that you're choosing the right one for you. You might consider a company's qualifications and treatment methods, as well as its years of experience and customer reviews. And of course, there's the cost of services to consider.
Below, we discuss each of these factors in more detail.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has set minimum standards of competency for pesticide applicators, but licensure is regulated at the state level. All pesticide applicators and their supervisors in Nebraska must be licensed through the proper state regulatory agencies.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
Pest control companies have the option to obtain certifications from QualityPro or similar trade organizations. These certifications can help you assess the quality of a company's products. For example, the GreenPro Service Certification indicates comprehensive and effective pest control treatment that is safer for people and the environment.
Pest control companies can also join certain professional organizations. While not mandatory, membership in organizations like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) or state-level organizations help demonstrate a company's reputability. After joining an organization like the NPMA, a company receives access to education, resources, and a network of other professionals with whom to discuss best practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
The amount of time that a company has been in business can tell you something about its experience dealing with the pests that live in Omaha. Customer reviews or the company's website itself can also inform you whether it has the experience necessary to deal with your particular pests. If you can't find the information you need online, contacting the company directly is an easy way to learn about its areas of expertise.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can check a company's rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), browse reviews on social media or local review sites, or check the standing of its license via the Nebraska licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
For many people, cost is one of the main deciding factors when hiring for pest control. Cost can be determined by factors like the type of pest being treated, the size of your house, and your location.
You can take into consideration whether a particular company offers free on-site estimates (to determine if it fits in your budget), and what sort of guarantees are provided. Often, a company will guarantee that if your pest problem isn't fixed by its treatment, it will continue to treat until it is.
Safety and Treatment Methods
Your preferences regarding safety for yourself, your children, your pets, and the environment can influence the provider and the treatment methods you choose.
Your pest control provider should be using pesticides that are low toxicity or non-toxic any time they can. If any pesticides they intend to use don't fit into one of these categories, your technician should explain what safety precautions will be in place to protect your family, your pets, and you. All pesticides that pose more than a minimum risk must be registered with the EPA.
Pest professionals looking to reduce their reliance on chemical pesticides often follow practices such as Integrated Pest Management (IPM). Using IPM involves a series of steps:
- Identify problem pests and determine whether immediate action is needed.
- Decide on the safest course of action.
- Use a combination of biological, cultural, mechanical, and physical controls to manage the pest problem.
- Use chemical controls only if needed, and always along with other controls for effective long-term pest management.
- Assess the outcome and implement additional pest control as needed.