Cockroaches are one of the most common household pests and enter your home in search of food and shelter. While they prefer hiding in dark and damp corners of your home, roaches can be spotted scurrying up walls or across kitchen countertops. They can also damage furniture and packaged goods, and they can spread allergens and trigger asthmatic reactions.
In this article, we’ll discuss the cost of DIY and professional roach extermination and walk you through how to protect your home from future cockroach infestations. Keep in mind, a pest control company might be your best line of defense.
Signs of a Roach Infestation
Roaches are always on the hunt for food, water, and shelter. Their flat bodies can slip through even the smallest openings, including dryer vents, door jambs, and cracked windows. Once in your home, roaches can quickly find their way to countertop crumbs, overflowing trash, and cluttered rooms.
At about 1.5 inches long, cockroaches are easier to spot than fleas or bed bugs. However, there are other ways of noticing an infestation before visibly seeing one of these nasty pests. Here are a few signs to look for if you suspect you have a cockroach problem:
- Droppings that resemble coffee grounds or pepper
- An oily, musty, and semi-sweet smell caused by cockroach pheromones
- Tan, black, or brown egg capsules that are pill- or purse-shaped
- Molted cockroach skins on the floor
- Damaged food packaging
Types of Roaches
If you turn on a light in a dark kitchen or bathroom and spot a cockroach scurrying into its hiding spot, it might be a sign of a larger pest problem. Where there’s one cockroach, there are usually many more. First, you’ll want to know what type of roach you’re dealing with.
Here are a few of the most common types of cockroaches and their identifying markings:
- American cockroach—The American cockroach measures about one inch long and has a reddish-brown body with a yellow band across its back. This type of cockroach is one of the largest and most common cockroaches.
- German cockroach—The German cockroach has a pale brown body with dark stripes on its head. This type of cockroach is one of the most difficult roaches to treat because of its high reproduction rate.
- Smoky brown roach—The smoky brown cockroach is small and has a dark brown color. Unlike many roach species, the smoky brown roach’s wings help them fly medium distances.
Average Roach Exterminator Cost
According to HomeAdvisor, you can expect to pay between $100 and $400 for a single cockroach treatment, with the average cost around $150. If you’re experiencing a severe cockroach infestation that requires additional time and resources, treatment can cost as much as $6,000.
Like many pest treatments, you can plan for a pest control company to spray for cockroaches on a monthly or bi-monthly basis. If you sign up for an annual treatment plan, most treatments will typically cost around $75.
Factors that Affect Roach Extermination Pricing
The cost of cockroach extermination is influenced by a variety of factors, including the square footage treated, the treatment type, and the severity of your infestation.
Square Footage of Your Home
The size of your home impacts the extermination process. For example, the more square footage an exterminator treats, the more you can expect to spend on treatment. View the chart below for a rough estimate of cockroach extermination costs based on your home’s square footage.
- 1,000 square feet: $100-$150
- 1,500 square feet: $150-$250
- 2,000 square feet: $250-$350
- 2,500 square feet: $350–$450
- 3,000 square feet: $450–$550
- 3,500 square feet: $550–$650
|Treatment||Cost per Square Foot||Pros||Cons|
|Spray||$40–$100||Can treat indoor or outdoor areas and is a quick way to eliminate roaches around your home||Some sprays are harmful to children and pets|
|Glue trap||$100–$600||Set throughout your home and gets rid of roaches without the use of harmful chemicals||May require a second round of treatment to remove roaches|
|Gel bait||$100–$600||Consumed by roaches and brought back to their nest, where others eat the bait and die||Takes some time to work and can be toxic to humans and pets|
|Dust||$100–$600||Dust consisting of boric acid is sprinkled throughout the home, killing cockroaches as they crawl through the substance and ingest it||Used in severe infestations as it’s toxic to humans and animals and they must leave the home before treatment|
|Fumigation||$1,200–$2,500||The entire home is filled with chemical gas that eliminates the roaches||Users can’t return home until the gas has dissipated|
|Tenting||$1,200–$7,500||Eliminates severe cockroach infestations||Extremely costly as it’s labor intensive and requires a lot of time|
Based on your home, budget, and infestation level, your exterminator will put together a plan that’s right for you. Here are the costs associated with each cockroach removal treatment as well as their pros and cons.
|Level of Infestation||Cost|
Getting rid of a few roaches calls for a simple treatment plan. However, if your home is filled with cockroaches, a more extensive treatment plan will be required, costing you a bit more money. Below are cost estimates based on the roach infestation level in your home.
DIY Roach Removal vs. Using an Exterminator
Cockroaches are a common household pest that can occasionally be controlled with DIY treatment options, however, relying on a professional to get the job done has its benefits, too.
DIY Roach Removal
Cockroach bait is one of the most effective DIY treatments. Priced between $10 and $20, these bait stations or liquid gel baits kill roaches and prevent them from returning. Another popular DIY treatment is cockroach spray, which kills the bug on contact. The average cost for cockroach sprays is between $5 and $10. While effective on contact, spray isn’t a preventative solution like gel bait.
While DIY cockroach treatment can be a suitable solution for a few roaches, you might have difficulty eliminating a large infestation as many products can’t eliminate bugs in their nests.
Using an Exterminator
In many cases, hiring an exterminator for roaches is required to get full control over an infestation. Here are some actions professionals take to help eliminate the pest from your home:
- Inspect all areas of your home for signs of roaches
- Create an actionable treatment plan based on your specific problem
- Safely handle chemicals and other pesticides
- Keep you informed throughout the entire process
- Return to your home for follow-up visits as needed
If you’re interested in professional pest control, we recommend Terminix, Orkin, and Hawx.
How To Avoid Future Roach Infestations
Here are a few ways to prevent cockroach infestations:
- Keep your home clean, particularly your kitchen floor and countertops
- Clean your appliances, including your refrigerator, stove, and dishwasher
- Restrict food consumption to a single area of the home to remove multiple cockroach food sources
- Keep food in sealed containers
- Seal entry points, including your front door and window sills
Many professional pest exterminators will also spray for other bugs like termites, fleas, ants, and crickets during cockroach treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions About Cockroach Extermination
What should I look for in a pest control professional?
When searching for a professional pest control provider in your area, it’s important to ensure that they’re licensed and insured. This confirms that they possess the necessary knowledge to handle dangerous pesticides and that they are protected should an accident occur in your home.
How long does it take for an exterminator to kill roaches?
The time it takes for an exterminator to get rid of roaches depends on a variety of factors, including your infestation severity, square footage of your home, and preferred treatment method. However, most cases require about one or two weeks’ worth of treatment.
What are bug bombs?
Bug bombs are aerosol propellants that are placed in rooms with an infestation to fumigate the area. While this treatment method is affordable and covers a large area, it doesn’t reach into hidden cracks and crevices. This allows many roaches to survive and reproduce.
Our Rating Methodology
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