Don't be Pestered by Pests this Summer!

July 18, 2012

As temperatures start to warm up, bugs and other pests will attempt to seek shelter in homes and office buildings. Better Business Bureau reports an increase in inquiries for pest control services during the months of May, June and July. So when the pest control job gets too big for a flyswatter, mousetrap or do-it-yourself spray, it could be time to call in a professional.

In the past year, BBB received complaints against pest control services with many of the complaints alleging treatments were not effective and pests were not fully exterminated. Other complaints allege issues over the final cost of the services or the payment process.

To help prevent pests from entering your home, make sure there are not any outside openings such as torn screens, cracks under the door or foundation issues. Homeowners should also should check and reapply any worn out weather stripping around outside doors and windows.

If considering a professional service to help with your pest problems, BBB recommends the following:

· Start with trust. Check any pest control company’s BBB Business Review before signing a contract. Look at the company’s rating, how it has responded to past customer complaints and any advertising issues it may have had.

· Compare price quotes. Solicit bids from at least three different pest control companies before making a decision. BBB provides a free Request a Quote service to gather estimates from local BBB Accredited Businesses. Be sure to provide the details of the services you need, and keep in mind the lowest price may not always be the highest quality of service.

· Ask about safety and risks. Because pesticides and pest control strategies can be dangerous to touch or directly inhale, be sure to ask the company about the safety of the chemicals it uses. Let the company know if you have pets, children or sensitive plants as that may impact the products they select for your home.

· Read the fine print. Carefully go over any contract before you sign. Pay close attention to any warranties or termination fees if the contract is extended for monitoring or future services. Make sure any additional discounts or guarantees promised are included in the contract.

· Check for licensing and insurance. Make sure company meets state licensing requirements by verifying with the Department of Agriculture. Also, be sure to ask for proof of the company’s workers’ compensation insurance and coverage for any potential property damage or personal liability.

To check the reliability of a company and find trustworthy businesses, visit

About Better Business Bureau:
BBB's mission is to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust. BBB accomplishes this mission by creating a community of trustworthy businesses, setting standards for marketplace trust, encouraging and supporting best practices, celebrating marketplace role models and denouncing substandard marketplace behavior.