When your personal efforts to control pests in your home are no longer delivering the desire results, and you are tired of being bugged all the time, you may want to turn to a professional pest control company for help. The biggest problem, though, is sifting through the seemingly infinite list of businesses in this industry.

What steps can you take to ensure that the exterminators you hire will perform as advertised and expected? Getting the answers to some specific questions will help you narrow the field to find a reliable company.

1. Is the company licensed and does it belong to a professional organization?

Licensing requirements vary from state-to-state, but working with a licensed exterminator means the company meets the minimum expectations of the state. You should also inquire about training for the technicians and whether the training follows a recognized course of instruction in application and safe handling of materials.

2. Does the company guarantee its work and will it provide references?

Simply treating a home for pests is not enough – it is results that matter. As such, is the company willing to guarantee, within reason, that their program is effective? If additional treatments are needed, are they included in the initial fee, or will they require additional charges. It is also important to ask for references and call them. A reputable company will have no problem with you checking the quality of its work and the satisfaction of its customers.

3. What are the specific details of the treatment program?

You need to know what chemicals and processes are used to exterminate pests, and any hazards they may pose. In addition, find out how long you will need to be out of your home, precautions to take, arrangements for housing pets and for how long, and if there is any additional drying or ventilation time. Finally, ask what a reasonable time to begin seeing results is.

4. Will the company provide a detailed estimate?

The exterminator should provide a detailed estimate before a contract is drawn up; some companies will do this at no charge, others will charge a fee that is deductible from the price of the treatment program if you use their service. The estimate presented should include pricing details, specific information about the treatment program (materials, methods of application, etc.), areas to be treated, and any additional services you require or request.

5. Are follow up treatments part of the original program or will there be additional charges?

Certain types of extermination require follow up treatment at predetermined intervals to ensure effectiveness, and these should be part of the original cost estimate. However, this is different from an annual pest control treatment program, so be sure you understand the difference.

6. What are your responsibilities as the owner and what pre-treatment preparation will need to be done?

Before the pest control company arrives, you may need to prepare you home for treatment. Ask the company representative for a checklist of specific tasks that you are responsible for prior to their arrival. This will prevent delays, any inconveniences, and extra charges.

Working with a licensed and reputable pest control company is a proven and safe approach to having a bug-free home. A little bit of research and due diligence on your part is the best way to ensure that you receive the service, satisfaction, and results you expect.

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