How To Choose a Pest Control Company
When hiring a pest control company, there are several factors you can consider to be sure you choose the best one for you. In addition to a company's qualifications and treatment methods, you may also consider how long it has been in business and what the reviews look like. Last but not least, you'll likely want to consider the cost of services.
Below, we explore the details of each of these factors.
Does the company have a valid license and permits to perform pest control?
All pesticide applicators, as well as those that supervise them, should be licensed via the appropriate Tennessee regulatory agencies. The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sets minimum standards of competency, while issuing, maintaining, and revoking licensure is handled at the state level.
Is the company a member of any professional organizations?
Obtaining additional optional certifications can help demonstrate that a pest control company is reputable. One example is the GreenPro Service Certification. To earn this certification, a company must prove that its methods are more environmentally friendly and that its employees receive up-to-date training. Additional certifications can be earned through QualityPro and similar trade organizations.
Pest control companies can also belong to various professional organizations. Membership in an organization like the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) or a state-level organization gives companies access to resources and education, and a network of professionals with whom to compare best practices. Joining organizations like these is not mandatory, but it can help show that a company follows industry 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 Clarksville. Customer reviews or the company's website itself can also inform you whether it has the skills and experience needed to deal with your particular pests. If you can't find the information you need online, reaching out to the company directly is an easy way to learn more.
Reviews and Recommendations
Resources that can be used to verify a company's legitimacy include the Better Business Bureau (BBB), local review sites, and social media. Additionally, you can confirm the status of a company's license via the Tennessee licensing board.
Cost of Services and Guarantees
Pest control costs can vary based on things like your location, the type of pest being treated, the size of your house, and other factors.
When considering the cost of services, you should verify whether a company includes free on-site estimates as part of its process. This can help determine whether the company fits into your budget. Also consider what guarantees a company offers: If the problem is not resolved, or returns, does the company provide additional treatment until the problem is satisfactorily resolved?
Safety and Treatment Methods
Your preferences regarding safety for yourself, any children or pets, and the environment can influence which provider and treatment methods you choose.
Be sure to ask your pest control technician if they plan to use low toxicity or non-toxic pesticides, and if not, what kind of precautionary measures they are going to use. Any pesticides that are not minimum-risk chemicals must be registered with the EPA. Your pest control provider will be able to provide you with information about all of the pesticides they are going to use.
You can ask if your technician will begin with more natural and lower-toxicity options before using harsher chemicals.
Many companies have begun to use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) to treat pest infestations with minimal personal or environmental risk. The steps of IPM are as follows:
- Figure out what pests are causing the problem and determine if immediate action is required.
- Determine the best and safest course of action.
- Use a combination of physical, biological, mechanical, and cultural controls to manage the pest problem.
- Use chemical controls only when required, and always along with other solutions for effective long-term pest management.
- Assess the outcome and provide additional pest control as needed.