How To Choose a Pest Control Company
Hiring the best company for you is the most important step in the pest control process. In addition to a company's qualifications and treatment methods, you might also look into how long it has been in business and what the reviews are like. Last but not least, you'll likely want to look at the cost of services.
Below, we dive into detail on each of these factors.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
While the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established minimum competency standards for pesticide applicators, licensure is taken care of at the state level. All pesticide applicators (and those who supervise them) in New Jersey need to be licensed by all the necessary state regulatory agencies.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
Pest control companies also have the option to obtain additional certifications like the GreenPro Service Certification. This certification is given once a company has shown that its treatment methods are more environmentally friendly and demonstrated that it also holds itself up to certain other standards, such as up-to-date training for employees. A company can also earn other certifications from QualityPro or similar trade organizations to further verify its methods and practices.
Pest control companies can also become members of professional organizations. Being a member of organizations like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) or state-level organizations is not required, but helps confirm that a company follows industry best practices. When a pest control company joins the NPMA, it gains access to education, resources, and a network of professionals with whom to discuss practices and methods.
Professional Experience and Specialties
You can gain some insight into a company's level of pest management experience by seeing how many years it has been in operation. The company's website and local reviews can also tell you whether a company has the experience needed to deal with the specific species of pests invading your home. You can always call the company directly to learn this information if it is not available online.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can look at a company's reviews and rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), check out local review sites and social media to learn what other people are saying, or verify its license standing through the New Jersey licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Things like the size of your house, your location, the type of pest being treated, and other factors can all influence the price of pest control.
You can find out whether a company offers free on-site estimates (to determine if it fits in your budget), as well as what sort of guarantees it offers. Often, a company will guarantee that if it does not resolve your pest problem, it will keep coming back until it does.
Safety and Treatment Methods
When it comes to picking a pest control provider, you want to select one that will keep you, your family, and your pets safe. You may also prefer an environmentally-conscious provider.
Make sure to ask your pest control provider if they plan to use low toxicity or non-toxic pesticides, and if not, what kind of precautionary measures they will have in place. Any pesticides that are not minimum-risk chemicals should be registered with the EPA. Your pest control provider should be able to supply information about all pesticides they plan on using.
Companies looking to reduce their reliance on chemical pesticides often implement procedures such as Integrated Pest Management (IPM). Using IPM involves a series of steps:
- Identify problem pests and determine if immediate action is needed.
- Decide on the safest course of action.
- Manage the pest problem using a combination of physical, cultural, biological, and mechanical controls.
- Use chemical controls only if needed, and always in combination with other methods for effective long-term pest management.
- Assess the outcome and implement additional pest control as needed.
Common Household Pests in Jersey City
Certain pests are more common than others. In Jersey City, common pests to be watchful for include the following:
- Mosquitoes: Mosquito infestations are more common if your home is in a wetter area (like Jersey City). They're also more common during the warmer months. Mosquitoes are more than just annoying--they can cause itchy bites and even carry diseases.
- Cockroaches: Cockroaches can be found in many parts of New Jersey, though they prefer wetter areas. This can make them an even bigger problem in Jersey City. Cockroaches might get into your house through small cracks, and they can sometimes spread diseases like salmonella.
- Spiders: You may encounter spiders in your basement, attic, or other moist, dark places. While most spiders are harmless and pose no threat to humans, you don't want a spider infestation in your home.
- Bed bugs: Bed bug infestations are often very hard to eliminate, so we strongly recommend calling a local exterminator as soon as possible. Bed bugs are found throughout New Jersey, and can infest not just your bedsheets, but also other furniture and even your wallpaper.
- Mice: If you have a mouse infestation, you might start noticing droppings around your house, or things like chewed wires. Frequently, mice are found in places where food is stored, or in attics.
Jersey City Pest Control FAQ
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Pest infestations occur when pests enter your house looking for something, generally food, water, or shelter. Pests may seek out and eat food or trash left sitting out. Some could also be drawn to standing water outside (from rain collecting in a particular area) or inside (from leaky pipes). They may also come into your home looking for shelter and get in through places like foundation cracks or broken screens.
One way to prevent pest infestations is seal off possible entrances into your house. This includes things like cracks in your foundation or siding. Second, avoid leaving food out for pests. This means keeping food in sealed containers and not leaving trash out. Finally, reduce standing water in and around your house. Find ways to reduce places where water can collect outside, and repair leaks inside.
In general, it's recommended that your house is treated for pests approximately once a year, more often if there is an active infestation. Your pest professional will ultimately be the one best equipped to recommend a treatment schedule for you.
Whether you need to clean your home following pest control services will change depending on what treatments are used. Be sure to ask your pest control technician while they are at your home. Generally, you will be able to dust, vacuum, and wipe down certain surfaces, although you should avoid wiping away chemical barriers or touching any traps unless you have been explicitly told to do so. You might notice a lingering smell after the application of some pesticides.
After pest treatment, it is important to continue to keep your home clean to discourage pests from returning.