Two of the most troublesome pests to get rid of in the home are ants and cockroaches. However, these pests seem to go unnoticed for quiet a while and this may lead to an infestation of your home. Most people use DIY products to get rid of these pests, such as ant traps, boric acid, roach motels and sprays such as Raid, Ortho and Black Flag. These products work, however all they really do is kills the pests that show themselves and not the ones that are hiding out in the lair and breeding.
It will cost you anywhere between $109 to $281 to hire a professional pest control service, depending on the type of infestation. If this price range seems a bit steep for you, there are a few things you need to take into consideration.
Store bought DIY repellents are only effective in keeping pests out of your sight, this does not mean that they are not there. Also, some insects such as wood borris, eat away at the wood in your home, which could cause you tens of thousands of dollars or damage, if left to breed. Alternatively, it can make your homes structure unlivable. Insects that bite and sting you can cause mild to moderate pain, or even death. A large number of household pests like the cockroach and mice and rats carry diseases. Insects as harmless as a pincher bug can also leave eggs and feces in your food. As an adult, you know better than you go anywhere near dangerous insects such as spiders, scorpions and fire ants, however, children do not and neither do your pets. So it is your responsibility to make sure that all members of your family are safe.
So the next time you feel that calling on the services of a professional exterminator is too costly, think about the potential dangers and consequences of not doing so.
One Time Pest Removal or Contract?
If you notice pests in your home for the first time, then you may just nee to call in pest removers once off. However, if you notice a re-occurrence of the infestation, it would be best to hire a pest removal service on a contract basis.
When you opt for the contract, you will receive scheduled extermination. These professionals will come to your home routinely and remove infestations. You can choose to go for the contract when you move into a new home and so not have pests, or you can opt for it as soon as you notice that you have a pest problem. You will probably pay more for a contract service over the years, however, in relation to having a pest infestation, it is a small price to pay.
The cost of this service depends largely on the size of the home, the type of pest infestation you have and the frequency that you require extermination.
Number of Visits
In this business, exterminators compare their business to that of house cleaning. They believe that the longer you go between cleaning the more dirt you have to clean up. So initially, costs will be high for your very first visit and thereafter, lower prices will be charged for maintenance.
When ever you are researching prices online, make sure that you clarify whether the price is for an initial visit, maintenance visit, a regular monthly installment, semi monthly or actually a quarterly fee. This will help put things into perspective.
One Time Visit
These visits are usually the most expensive, ranging from $300 to $500 per visit. This is basically because it is a one time visit and there is a lot of work involved. When pest exterminators come to your home, they need to assess the infestation, find the lair and identify entry points into the home, not to mention kills all and any visible pests.
This visit normally costs around $185. This includes assessment of the problem, finding the nest and find the points of entry into the home. You will also have to agree to periodic visits, which is backed up with a contract for security reasons. In some cases, where quarterly options are chosen, there may be a clause stating that if visits are needed in between the scheduled ones, it will be done for fee. Please ensure that you read over your contract to ensure whether this is included.
These periodic visits can be arranged monthly, bi-monthly and even quarterly. If you go for the monthly option, you are looking at an average installment of $45 per month. Semi or Bi-monthly will cost you around $60 and quarterly will cost you between $100 to $300.
There are typically tow factors that cab cause these prices to escalate and that is the size of your home and the level of infestation. So if you have an unusually big home, expect to pay more than the quote you initially received. Or if your level of infestation has reached proportionate levels, you may also be required to pay more. Make sure that you discuss all of the factors that will cause your quote to be raised. This is best done during the inspection, so you know how much you are looking at spending, more or less.
Pests that Require Ongoing Treatment
Some pests are easier to remove than others. Raccoons and squirrels are easily removed by taking away their food source and blocking nesting places and points of entry into the home. You can get rid of ants by trimming branches and other forms of access into the home. Bees are also easily removed by a bee keeper, who has his ways of getting the entire swarm to relocate. In some cases, pest control services is just a once off thing, such as a snake that has found its way into the craw space in your walls.
In other cases, there are some pests that keep coming back, over and over again. Cockroaches, spiders, termites, fleas, mice and rats are just a few of those returning pests. This is mainly because your home is an attractive source of food and a great nesting area for these pests. Keeping your home spotlessly clean is a great way to keep pests out, however, even this does not work at times. Most pests hide during the day and only come out at night to see if you have left any food behind for them. If they cannot find anything, it may lead them to wander deeper and further into your home.
So the best and most stress free way to keep these pests repelled is to have your home routinely exterminated. The frequency you choose is entirely up to you, as long as you do it periodically.
The climate will also play a role in pests infesting your home, For instance, hot and dry climates may cause pests to wander into your home seeking shade form the sun and a cooler living area. Warm and humid areas usually attract wood-boring insects that feed on moldy wood, but could eventually start eating of good wood and this is the last thing you want as these insects can cause a lot of damage to your furniture and belongings, not to mention your home itself. The cold winter season is none the better as this leads pests lie the cockroach and earwig into your home for the warmth that comforts them. Ladybugs may also seek out the warmth of indoors during winter. Most people don’t know it, but even insects like wasps, will seek out warmth on your attic or warm areas, sacrificing even their larvae to die in paper nests as they do so.
Not everyone lives in temperate areas, where the weather rarely fluctuates and this means that you need routine visits from an exterminator.
What Type of Pests are in Your Home?
The first step in ridding your home of a pest infestation is finding out what it is infested with. If you see a mouse, don’t assume that this is your pest problem. Likewise if you see a wolf spider, don;t assume that spiders are your problem, they may just be after their favorite prey, cockroaches.
Some of the most common pests found in American Homes are:
Ants, cockroaches, Centipedes, Earwigs, Mice, Raccoons, moths, rats, bed bugs, beetles, crickets and silverfish. Silverfish are not dangerous, but they do serious damage to fabric, books, and other similar materials. Spider eat insects and they try to avoid people, but their webs may cause a build up of dust and allergens. Other common American household pests are woodlice, squirrels, termites and weevils.
Some people may argue that these pests are not dangerous and cannot cause any harm to humans or their homes. However, there is no doubt that they leave behind feces and eggs and ultimately the fact of the matter is that they do not belong inside your home. Your home is where you raise you children, your babies crawl on the floor and most of the time, eat of it too, so you need to make sure that your home is as safe for your children as possible. In other cases, raccoons can cost you a lot of money if left where they are as they tear up your crawl space to make their nests.
Do You Know How Many Pests You Have?
Exterminators believe that the sooner you get rid of pests from your home, the better. It is always best to catch them, before they have a chance a reproduce, however, this is not always possible.
Once you give these pests time to lay their eggs, grow or form colonies, it is too late and you already have an infestation. Some people may notice pests in the home and think it s normal or unavoidable. So they ignore it. This is the worst thing anyone can do. This gives the pests time to reproduce and also cause damages to your property. It will also end up costing you more to exterminate them at this stage of the infestation.
There is no way of telling exactly how many pest you have, however two of the most common household pests are mice and cockroaches. They also have the fastest reproduction rates.
When it comes to mice, a single female, produces between 5 to 10 litters per year and each of these litters have between 5 to 6 mice. The babies are able to start reproducing after only 30 days. So after one year you could have between 300 to 720 mice.
Cockroaches can produce between 4 to 8 egg capsules in one lifetime. Inside each capsule, there are between 30 to 48 eggs and after one year that single female cockroach would have produced between 120 to 384 eggs. Roaches take anywhere between 40 to 125 days to mature and start reproducing after they are born. So you are probably looking at between 1,500 to 1,800 roaches being produced in one year by one female.
For pests like these the only solution is routine and regular maintenance from your pest control experts. All you can do is control and maintain them as total removal is almost impossible, with reproductive rates such as these.
The Damage that These Pests Cause
Most people think they are saving money by not contacting or hiring out an exterminator. After all, they reason that a can of bug spray is far cheaper than hiring pest control professionals.
However, what many people overlook if the fact that these insects are causing damage to your property, belongings and so on. These insects can eat through your expensive clothes and lay eggs all throughout your home. Termites can even render your home unlivable. Insects and pests also spread bacteria and germs that can make your family sick. Children most susceptible to getting sick because of their developing immune systems. So when you really think about it rationally and logically, are you really saving money by not using a professional pest control service? Or are you just costing yourself more money and putting your family at risk of illness.
Here are some examples of damage that common pests can do:
Mice eat your food and are a potential and probable health hazard as their feces often get left behind in your grains and cereals. They leave trail of their urine scent where ever they go and they spread diseases such as rabies, salmonella, foot and mouth disease and Hantavirus. They basically contaminate everything where ever they cross and fleas are not far behind when you have mice and rats in your home. It is also believed that mice and rats chew on the insulation on electrical wiring and 25% of fires are caused this way. So when you look at the bigger picture, you can spend a few hundred dollars to replace contaminated food or a few hundreds of thousands of dollars to replace a home that has burned to the ground, taking all your material belongings with it.
Termites are possibly the most destructive pests you will ever come across in your life. They eat wood and thus cause damages in excess of $5 billion each year. If you spot a termite in your property, the best thing you can do is pick up the phone and get an exterminator to your home immediately.
People often underestimate the psychological damage that an insect infestation can have on a person. For those who have had no choice but to live in insect infested homes, due to poverty, they will live with paranoia probably for the rest of their lives. Even when they move out of that house, every sensation or little tickle, will convince them that there are pests close by. It may sound like a relatively trivial or insignificant problem for many people, yet only those who had to endure sharing a home with these pests will understand what it feels like. The sensation stays with them for the rest of their lives and may even turn into a phobia.