How To Choose a Pest Control Company
There are a number of factors that you can weigh when selecting the right pest control company for you. Things you may consider include licensing and qualifications, treatment methods, years of experience, customer reviews, and cost.
Below, we dive into detail on each of these factors.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
Per the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), all pesticide applicators and their supervisors must be licensed at the state level. The EPA maintains minimum standards of competency, and the New York regulatory agencies take care of the issuing, maintaining, and revoking of licenses.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
An optional certification that may be worth looking for is the GreenPro Service Certification. To earn this certification, a pest control company must both demonstrate that its practices are more environmentally friendly and uphold certain technician training standards. Companies can also earn other certifications from trade organizations like QualityPro to further support their work.
Pest control companies can also belong to certain professional organizations. Pest control companies can join both state-level organizations and national organizations like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). While not mandatory, membership in these organizations helps prove a company's reputability and gives it access to education, resources, and a network of professionals with whom to compare best practices.
Professional Experience and Specialties
The amount of time that a company has been in business can give you some insight into its experience dealing with the pests that live in Brooklyn. Customer reviews or the company's own website can also enlighten you as to whether it has the experience needed to handle your specific pest problem. If you cannot find the answers to your questions online, calling a representative is an easy way to learn about the company's areas of expertise.
Reviews and Recommendations
You can check a company's reputation using the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and local review sites or social media. You can also check with New York's licensing board to see the status of a company's license.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Cost is important when hiring someone for pest control. Cost can be affected influenced by your location, the type of pest being treated, the size of your house, and other factors.
Many companies offer free on-site estimates before starting work, to help you decide whether it fits into your budget. You can also ask whether if your company has a satisfaction guarantee, meaning that if your pest problem is not solved by the initial treatment, it will continue returning until it is.
Safety and Treatment Methods
Keeping yourself, your family and your pets safe is an important consideration when selecting a pest control provider. You might also prefer a provider that uses environmentally-friendly methods.
All pesticides (except those that are determined to be of minimal risk) are required to be registered with the EPA. Your pest control technician should be able to provide you with information on each pesticide they are using. They should inform you whether the pesticides are low toxicity or non-toxic, and if not, what safety precautions will be taken.
Nowadays, many companies are exploring greener and cleaner pest solutions that can be used before (or instead of) chemical pesticides. Many are following the practice of Integrated Pest Management (IPM), which goes as follows:
- Identify problem pests and determine whether immediate action is needed.
- Determine the best and safest course of action.
- Use a combination of biological, cultural, mechanical, and physical controls to manage the pest problem.
- Employ chemical controls only when absolutely necessary, and always along with other methods for effective long-term pest management.
- Assess the outcome and continue with additional pest control as needed.
Common Household Pests in Brooklyn
Not all pests are equally common in Brooklyn. Some species that you should keep an eye out for include the following:
- Cockroaches: Cockroaches can be found in many parts of New York, although they prefer wetter areas. This can make them an even bigger problem in Brooklyn. Cockroaches might come inside through small cracks, and they can bring in diseases like salmonella.
- Flies: You may see flies around sinks or in places where you keep food. Flies can get into your house in Brooklyn throughout the year, but they're particularly common during warmer months.
- Bed bugs: Bed bugs can be found throughout New York, and they can cause major problems if left untreated. Because bed bug infestations can be tricky to get rid of, we recommend hiring a professional exterminator as soon as you discover the problem. Bed bugs can infest wallpaper, bedsheets, furniture, and more.
- Spiders: You may find spiders in your 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.
Brooklyn Pest Control FAQ
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Pests enter your house looking for one of three things: food, water, or shelter. Some pests will enter your home simply because they have the opportunity to do so, via a foundation crack or broken screen. Some are attracted to food, either actual food left out or trash sitting out in the open. Others look for water, either standing water outside or puddles inside from things like leaky pipes.
There are several steps you can take to help prevent pest infestations. First, don't leave food out. Make sure food is stored in sealed containers, and don't leave trash sitting around.
Next, try not to have standing water in or around your home. Fix leaks indoors and eliminate standing water sites outside. Finally, seal off potential pest entrances into your home, including siding or foundation cracks.
When you see signs of pests in your Brooklyn home--things like droppings, nests, signs of damage, or the pests themselves--you should call an exterminator. If you've had recurrent or seasonal infestations, we suggest contacting a local pest control company to set up annual pest management services.
Preventive pest control is important because it can help stop pest problems before they start. Your local pest control technician will be familiar with the pests in your part of Brooklyn, including how they get into homes and the times of the year during which they are most active.Your technician can make changes and put barriers in place to keep pests out of your home, saving you time and money that would otherwise be spent on future pest control visits--and on the damage and illness caused by pests.
You could feel like you're seeing more pests in your home in the days following pest control treatment. This can be due to living pests being flushed from their hiding places deep in your home, or you may be finding more dead pests around. If the amount of pest activity hasn't begun to decrease in a week or two following treatment, contact your Brooklyn pest professional to see if more treatment is required.