Does your home have a pest problem? Household beetles, bathroom bugs, ants in the kitchen, bugs getting in from the backyard? Once you’ve run through all of the DIY options of ridding your home from these pests, it’s time to call a pest control professional. Before you make that call, consider these five important questions that can help ensure not only that your pest problem gets fixed, but that your home, and wallet, are protected in the process.
Question 1: Is the company adequately licensed, bonded, and insured?
Ensuring that the home pest control company is properly credentialed is absolutely necessary. Pest control companies work with dangerous chemicals to rid your home of annoying pests, and because of that, they need to have specific licenses in order to administer those chemicals properly.
In addition to proper licensing, make sure that the pest control company has adequate insurance. This protects you and your home, as well as the pest control company itself, from any costly damages or unfortunate incidents that may occur as a result of the service — a properly licensed and insured company is also more likely to provide quality results and is much less likely to leave behind a problem. Make sure to ask for proof of license and insurance before you sign/agree to the services.
Question 2: Do they offer a free, no obligation quote up front?
Watch out for contractors who pitch low initial estimates only to tack on additional charges to the bill at the end of service.
Many home pest control companies offer free inspections and will then provide a written estimate of all your costs before the work begins. This allows you to see everything up front, which discourages the company from adding additional fees during the service, as well as provides you with a framework to dispute any additional fees, if needed.
Additionally, it also allows you to discuss treatment options such as how many times you’ll need treatment or which chemicals the company will be using. This is especially helpful if your family or home has any special requests or needs that differ from a standard treatment.
Question 3: Is the treatment safe for pets and humans?
Modern pest control treatments are generally safe for both humans and their pets, but it’s always a good idea to make sure that the pest control company you go with uses safe chemicals. Some pets, such as snakes, are biologically different than your typical house cat, so make sure to specifically ask about the pets you have and not the standard dog or cat.
A good home pest control contractor will be able to tell you why and how a chemical is safe for you and your loved ones and if you need to leave your house during treatment. By failing to ask this question, you may come home to a house that is unsafe for some of your beloved pets that fall outside of the normal, day-to-day treatments performed by the pest control company.
Question 4: Does the treatment work on my issue?
Not all pest control treatments are the same; because let’s face it, not all pests are the same. You may be having issues with a specific bug, like household beetles you can’t get rid of, or maybe you just want to know how to kill the spiders in your house!
Check with your pest control professional to find out which treatments they provide and if their treatment will work on your specific pest issue.
Question 5: What if the treatment doesn’t work?
A quality home pest control company is going to have some type of warranty or guarantee on their services. Understand what each company offers in order to make the best selection. It’s also a good idea to ask them about preventative measures you can take, as well as any additional services they provide for pest control prevention. By fully understanding the pest control company’s guarantees, you can make sure that you not only get what you pay for but that you also get results that last.
Question 6: What do their customer reviews look like?
As with anything, do your research. The internet is full of customer reviews and ratings, some of which are helpful and some that, sadly, are not. Check out each company you’re considering and see what their customers are saying about them both on their website and on other third-party websites, such as Google My Business, Facebook, and industry-specific sites.
You can also ask the companies directly about their customer satisfaction. By doing this, you will be able to see what they take pride in and how they rate themselves, which you can then compare to the other reviews you have found online. With this, keep in mind that most online reviews will be polarizing: very good experiences and the worst possible experiences. Make sure to look at a wide range of reviews from different sources to ensure you receive an adequate understanding rather than just an initial response to the first positive or negative review you see.