HOW TO HIRE A PEST CONTROL COMPANY
Pest control can be complex.
For anyone having to deal with a nuisance or harmful pest problem, it can be frustrating, worrisome, and even embarrassing. It has the power to keep you up at night and creep into your thoughts throughout the day.
- For businesses, it can have a direct impact on your reputation, bottom line and livelihood.
- For homeowners, having pests invade your living spaces is stressful and can impact your quality life, especially if you have children, pets or loved ones with allergies in your home.
Last month we discussed why pest problems are best handled by professionals, and the value of hiring a pest control professional. But not all pest management professionals are created equal. While many are competent and licensed experts who deliver results, others are not up to par.
So how can you be sure that the pest control company or professional you hire will deliver honest, quality, and expert pest control service?
How do you know he or she is safe to allow entry into your home or business?
How do you go about finding the right pest control company?
Hiring a reputable pest control professional does not have to be complicated or stressful. To help ease the process, we've provided helpful information, tips and questions to ask.
Questions to ask when considering a pest control company for hire
- Does the company appear to be a legitimate, established business?
- Research the company by visiting their website - does it look professional and credible? Does it have helpful content? Is there accurate contact information?
- How many years has the company been in business?
- Does it have experience in the pest control services that you need - residential, commercial, cottage or country?
- Are they insured?
- What do the online reviews say about the company? Any questionable press or alerts about possible scams, lawsuits or safety issues?
- Are they licensed?
- Be direct - ask if they are licensed, and if it is current.
- Also confirm that their technicians carry the appropriate identification, including any licensing or verification documentation when they visit customers.
- Tip - For your personal safety and security, always ask to see proper and current identification prior to allowing anyone on or in your premises.
- Do they offer Integrated Pest Management (IPM)?
- IPM includes monitoring for any bugs and insects that were missed during treatment and is key in helping to get rid of complex pests.
- Is the company affiliated with a professional pest control association?
- Do they ask you questions about your home or property, and those that occupy it?
- A solid pest control company will want and need to understand the environment and persons who are being impacted by a pest infestation.
- With knowledge of occupants’ age, allergies or sensitivities, pets, proximity of any infested areas to wildlife, fish, or water, etc., the pest control professional can devise the most effective treatment options tailored for your situation.
- Do they discuss the treatment options proposed for your home or business?
- They should ask you if you have a preference over the type of treatment, such as environmentally friendly solutions.
- They should go over the pros and cons of the various options with you and give a recommended course of action to consider.
- Sometimes treatment options can be confidently communicated over the phone, and other times, a more effective and comprehensive treatment plan and other possible viable solutions are devised once an infestation is inspected on-site and is fully assessed.
- Once on your premise, and before any service has started, the pest management technician should speak with you about the pest problem and any changes that may have surfaced. They should also complete a thorough inspection, and review the treatment details and plan with you, especially if it has changed, and answer any questions that you have.
- Do they provide formal quotes and contracts?
- Read and ask questions to understand quotes, specifically their validity period if there are any promotions or discounts offered.
- Before you sign any contract make sure you read it and the fine print through. If anything is unclear, ask questions so that you are informed and confident about what you are signing and agreeing to.
- Does the company guarantee its services?
- Confirm if a guarantee is offered and have them thoroughly explain it, especially terms and conditions and how to invoke it.
- For many guarantees or service warranties to be valid, there are often responsibilities and actions that a homeowner or property owner must take.
- If there is no guarantee offered, ask why. That could be a negative signal.
- Do they provide exceptional customer service from start to finish?
- Whether speaking with a customer service rep or a pest management technician at the quoting stage or during service or post service, you should feel that:
- They listened to you.
- They addressed your concerns and questions with respect.
- They were knowledgeable and confident.
- They put you at ease, and you felt confident in their capabilities.
- They did what they said they would.
- You received results and value.
How to tell you're partnered with a quality pest control company now
- They are licensed and insured.
- Their staff is knowledgeable, helpful, and attentive every time you contacted them, whether it was for a quote, to understand a contract, warranty, their services or what treatment they applied the last time they serviced you.
- Their technicians arrived on time and appeared professional in a clean uniform
- Their truck, boat and equipment were clean and appeared well-maintained and in good working condition.
- They came prepared with the proper PPE and safely stored chemicals (if required).
- They took the time to speak to you:
- Before they got started - They reviewed the pest issue more in detail and learned of any changes. They went over the treatment plan, any chemicals used and what to expect after treatment.
- When they finished - They re-capped the work they just completed, explained next steps, including what was expected or needed from you, reviewed the warranty and any documentation they were leaving with you with.
- They left the right documentation and how to best contact them with any concerns or further support.
- If asked, they were knowledgeable about your pest issues, the chemicals used, and could provide MSDS (material safety data sheets) for any products used.
- If you needed to contact them for the same issue, they responded in a timely manner.
- They honoured their service guarantee, if warranted and invoked.
Some final advice to help you hire a pest control company
- Ask your neighbours, family, friends and co-workers if they have any recommendations for a reputable pest control company, and why they chose them.
- Never make a decision based on price, because the saying “you get what you pay for” rings very true. Get a few estimates and focus on understanding the results and value you are getting for the price quoted.
- If you do not understand anything about the services, quote, contact, warranty, or treatment plan, ask.
We hope your home or business remains pest free, but if not, using these tips will help you find the right pest control management professional for your pest issue.