If you've ever been to the southeast during the warmer months, you know mosquitoes are a huge nuisance. Between annoying buzzing, itchy bites, and dangerous diseases, a mosquito infestation left untreated can turn any summer afternoon into a nightmare.
But before you hire the first available exterminator, consider that the closest or cheapest company may not provide the best service. Worse, an incomplete or poorly-executed treatment can allow some mosquitoes to survive and reproduce. Within a few weeks, you're right back where you started with nothing to show for it.
Before you hire an exterminator, you need to make sure he or she is qualified to get the job done right the first time. Here are five vital questions to ask before hiring a pest control professional to treat your mosquito problem:
How long have you been in business?
When you're getting any work done on or around your home, you can't afford to put it in the hands of an unreliable company. That makes finding out more about the company's history a necessity prior to hiring them.
Regardless of the exterminators you're considering, the first question you ask should be how long the company has been in business. After all, a company that's been operating for several decades wouldn't have the capacity to do so if it wasn't meeting customer expectations and leaving them satisfied with the work.
Of course, the age of the company should not be the only deciding factor. After all, the oldest company is not necessarily the best. However, if a company has been in operation for a while a and established a good reputation within the community, chances are high that they'll be able to finish your project with the same dedication that they brought to ones in the past.
What are your qualifications?
Now that you know how long the company has been in business, it's time to find out why they've been so successful. By asking your prospects about their qualifications, you'll be giving them an opportunity to sell themselves to you.
Ask about what licenses and certifications the company has earned. Is the company part of any professional organizations, industry-related associations, or fellowships? Has the company won any awards or received recognition for excellent service?
In addition to the company as a whole, don't be afraid to ask specifics as well. How are individual employees trained? What certifications has your representative received? What makes their team more qualified to treat your yard than the competition?
Can you provide references?
After you've found out the company's history from the mouths of the employees that work there, it's time to see what other people are saying, namely their former customers.
Getting customer references is great for two reasons: for one, it can be a great tool to help you narrow your options down to your best 2-3 candidates based on the input you receive. For two, hearing about the homeowner's experience in their own words can give you a much better idea of what to expect when it's time for your own treatment.
How are you insured?
Interviewing the company and hearing from satisfied customers are a great way to find out what to expect if everything goes right, but don't forget to protect yourself in the event that something goes wrong.
Ask all your prospects about how they're insured. Generally, this will come in two forms: general liability insurance, which protects you from being incurring financial responsibility if any of your property is damaged during treatment, and workers compensation, which keeps you from being held accountable should a worker get injured on the job.
Don't sign on with any company that can't provide both.
What methods do your employees use?
Finally, after ensuring the safety of your home and your wallet, it's time to take the safety of the environment into the account. Not all mosquito treatment methods are created equal, and some can leave a much bigger environmental footprint on the surrounding ecosystem than others.
Among damaging practices, mosquito blowers are among the worst offenders. While they are effective at killing mosquitoes, they are equally effective at killing anything else that comes into contact with the pesticide, including helpful animals like bees, hummingbirds, and butterflies. For more information, check out our blog about the negative impact mosquito blowers have on the environment.
If the company you're considering uses harmful practices such as mosquito blowers, it may be time to move on to other candidates.
Want to learn more about how you can keep mosquitoes out of your yard this summer as painlessly as possible? Download our free informative Ebook, How to Keep Mosquitoes Out of Your Yard This Summer, and take back your yard today!
If you find yourself needing mosquito extermination services, don't hesitate to give us a call today!