8 Key Questions to Ask When Hiring a Professional Exterminator
There are approximately 124 million housing units in the US, and 14 million of them reported cockroach sightings in the last year. 14.8 million of them saw mice or rats in their living space. So how do you get rid of these unwanted visitors when they visit your home?
While you can try it alone, nothing beats the experience of a professional. Read on as we discuss eight questions you need to ask before hiring a professional exterminator.
1. What Pesticides Will Be Used?
Pesticides are not universal solutions. One product may only work on certain pests, while others may even be prohibited in your state or area.
Speak with a few companies about what they advise concerning the best treatment for your problem. You can then do a little research to see if it sounds like the correct approach. It will also tell you how well the company knows its topic!
If a company claims to have a secret ingredient then avoid them. Pest control chemicals are dangerous and tightly controlled by the government. As such, many of them use the same chemicals just in different ways.
2. How Long Have You Been in Business?
The company itself does not have to have been in business a long time. However, you need to know that the people running it have industry experience. The longer they have worked in the field, the better it is.
Pest removal is not just about getting rid of the problem. An experienced exterminator will be able to advise on how to prevent the problem from happening again. They may even offer to follow up work or provide a guarantee based on their knowledge of the problem.
3. Are You Bonded and Insured?
Every pest control company in the US should be licensed under law. Each state will have different regulations, so check which applies to you. When you are thinking of hiring a company ask to see their license and paperwork.
Being licensed holds them up to a set of professional standards. It ensures they adhere to good consumer practices and have a track record of excellence.
Bonding and insurance are as important. This covers the company for any accidental damage to your property or injury to an individual. If they are not and a problem occurs, then you may find yourself financially liable for the outcome.
4. Do You Have Reviews and Testimonials?
When hiring an exterminator, knowing their track record will provide peace of mind. Start by asking them for any previous customer testimonials. They may even be included on the company website.
After this, conduct some research of your own. If the company has been in business for a while, it should have reviews on trade sites and social media. You can even ask friends and family which companies they have used and see who they were happy with.
5. How Should I Prepare?
The response to this will depend on the treatment being used. A company must give you the right advice, as if not the service may take longer than expected. In some cases, the wrong preparation may even damage your health.
You may get asked to clean or tidy a room. You may have to leave the premises for a day or two while the chemicals are used. Knowing in advance gives you time to prepare and prevents any last-minute surprises.
6. Will Follow-up Treatments Be Required?
Some problems and their solution will have an immediate impact. For example, when a nest is destroyed that is often the end of an issue for the immediate future. Yet some may require multiple treatments as eggs get laid in tight hiding places that are hard to reach in one go.
A company may not know the exact amount of return visits they need, but they should be able to give you a ballpark figure on how many return treatments will be needed. They should also be able to provide exterminator prices for these return visits.
All of these problems will be unique to the area and your property. It may take two visits to eradicate a property of mice, but four for another similar sized one.
7. Will the Treatment Be Pet and Child Safe?
Pests in your home can make the inhabitants extremely ill. Products used to get rid of them should not. Any reputable pest company will do the best they can to use treatments that are pet and child safe.
For many this is a licensing requirement, so should not be a problem if they are legitimate. Ask them about the chemicals they will use and how they work.
They may provide suggestions, such as vacating the area or keeping rooms ventilated. Generally, any pesticide should be safe once it has dried.
8. How Much Is an Exterminator?
You may have to do some research and get quotes from two or three companies to find out the cost of hiring an exterminator. Keep in mind that the lowest price is not always the best. It may not include the best service or follow-up advice and treatments.
Make sure any written estimates given are stuck by. It is not uncommon for people to give estimates over the phone and then change them when they see how big the problem is. Make sure anything is provided in writing and binding.
Hiring a Professional Exterminator
Now you know the questions to ask a professional exterminator, shop around. Get a few quotes and see who has the best reviews and testimonials. You can then book them to rid your home.
Pest Extinct can help you on the journey. We have a guide to all the best exterminators in your area. Click here to compare quotes from all the providers in your region.