Whether you need to hire a professional exterminator or you can handle the problem on your own will be entirely dependent on several factors. Sometimes it’s best to leave the pros to handle issues such as pest infestation.
Here are 5 questions from to ask yourself before hiring a professional exterminator to determine whether this is the case or not.
1. What kind of pest am I up against?
Before you decide whether to hire a pest controller or not, you need to know what kind of threat you’re up against. There are pests you can easily handle on your own, and then there are those where you absolutely need professional help.
If you’re wondering whether to call an exterminator or not, then you probably have a clue what might be that is infesting your home (or at least have an idea where it resides).
If you’ve seen a cockroach in the kitchen, then you can be sure there is an infestation. Cockroaches are notorious for hiding and avoiding light – for every one you see, there’s possibly about a hundred you (thankfully) don’t see.
In case you haven’t spotted the pest but think something is going on, then maybe it would be better to opt for an inspection. Waking up covered in red spots is not a good sign and aside from a consultation with your general physician, it might be a good idea to order a visit from a certified controller because you might have bed bugs.
Losing sleep because of this can be a serious problem that will not only affect your lifestyle and health, but it will be a detriment to your business.
Figure out what the problem is. If you’re unable to establish the threat or you’re unable to handle it, it’s best to leave it to the pros.
2. What is the cause of the infestation?
A pest infestation doesn’t happen out of nowhere. It’s something that is usually a long time coming. In most cases, people think it’s only through the clutter and low upkeep that pests spread. Even though that is the most beneficial environment for many a vermin, the clean and well-kept homes are not out of the woods.
Depending on the pest, there might be different causes, but they often overlap. Here are the usual suspects:
Clutter is the top contender for most pest-friendly noun;
Food leftovers can attract anything from ants to rats;
Organic waste can do the same;
Having multiple points of entry;
Having stale water around your home;
All of these are linked to a higher incidence of pest infestations. Try to eliminate all of them. Maybe that can help you solve the pest problem.
3. Is there a DIY method I can use?
Some pest infestations aren’t (or at least they don’t seem to be) serious enough to require the involvement of professionals. In case there is a DIY solution for your particular problem, you could try and solve the problem on your own should you choose to do so.
After all, hiring a professional can also save time, but if that’s not a problem for you, then there is a wealth of information online that might help. DIY pest control is full of crazy tricks and ideas.
4. How serious is the infestation?
Not all pest infestations were created equal. Some can be easily handled with a good scrub and a can of consumer-grade pesticide (read the labels carefully). Others require a bit more specialized approach, such as heat treatments to mention one.
In most cases, if it comes to wood-based pests such as termites, it’s best to leave the pros to handle it. It’s much trickier than it looks and the potential damages can be staggering. Same goes for bed bugs – they are very resilient and have grown accustomed to non-specialized treatments. Small infestations you can handle on your own, but in many cases, it’s best left to the pros.
5. Is hiring an exterminator safe?
Let’s address the elephant in the room. Exterminators use industrial-grade pesticides. You cannot purchase those at your local supermarket. How can they be safe in that case?
The answer is pretty simple – in order to get their certifications, pest controllers pass through different tests and exams. Some of these exams include the proper handling of pesticides. Yes, those materials would be dangerous if used improperly, but controllers know how to use them correctly.
Furthermore, exterminators often use the best and latest leading edge materials on the market. Those are often much more effective, yet much safer than the previous generations or in comparison to what is commercially available.
Finally, pest technicians give you clear instructions on what to do. You won’t have to wonder whether it’s safe or not – they will let you know.