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Professional Pest Manager does not recommend or endorse any particular pest manager. In choosing a suitable pest manager we recommend using our checklist below.
Choosing a pest control company
In choosing a pest control company, it’s important to choose a company you can trust. Recommendations from family and friends are a good starting point, but in deciding on a pest control company there are some key questions to ask and consider…
Is the pest manager licensed to carry out the work?
Regulations vary somewhat around Australia, but anyone carrying out pest control services need to have the appropriate license. You should ask to see the license of any pest manager who carries out a treatment.
Licenses need to specify what work they are allowed to carry out. The wording may vary in different states but “Pest Control” does not include termites or timber pests. It needs to be specified on the license if they are licenced to carrying out termite/timber pest inspections or termite treatments.
Is the company insured for the work being carried out?
The company carrying out the pest control work needs to be suitably insured, which means that should have both public liability and professional indemnity insurance.
Public liability insurance covers is any damage or harm to people or animals, as well as any accidental damage that may occur during a treatment.
Professional indemnity insurance covers financial loss, personal injury and property damage that results from a negligent act, error or omission by the pest control manager / company. For any termite/timber inspection or termite treatment services, this provides the customer with important peace of mind, where a mistake by the pest manager can lead to significant financial lose (due to termite damage).
You are within your rights to ask to see an insurance certificate of currency and the pest control company cannot refuse. Make sure it is both current and includes the services you are paying them for.
How much experience do they have?
Experience isn’t everything but it certainly helps, especially when it comes to more difficult pest problems and termite work. Ask how long the company has been in business and how much experience the technicians have. It is also likely (and not unreasonable) that an experienced company / pest manager will charge more for their services.
Pest managers need to have completed and passed the necessary training courses in order to be licenced and insured. If a pest control company provides their technicians with continuous training, it’s a strong signal that they want to provide the best service by ensuring their technicians keep up to date with the latest knowledge, techniques and products. Ask what regular training they provide and what conferences they attend.
Some companies choose to be members of an industry body. The key pest control industry body is the Australian Environmental Pest Managers Association (AEPMA). Any pest manager who is an AEPMA member is bound by their Code of Ethics, which provides you some extra protection and an extra avenue through which to pursue a complaint, if required. In addition, AEPMA manage PestCert, an accreditation that indicates that the holders have a high level of knowledge, are committed to continuous training and adhere to a range of industry codes of contact.
However, a some pest control companies choose not members of AEPMA nor have PestCert accreditation. Many of these non-member companies are still excellent, knowledgeable pest control companies delivering first class service.
Getting recommendations from friends is a great starting point to identify potential pest control companies. However, it’s still important to carry out your own checks as well. Use the checklist above as a starting point but also ask them specific questions about the services you require. Check out our pages on pest control, termite inspections and termite treatments for additional questions you need to ask.
Although everyone likes a bargain, don’t necessarily go for the cheapest price, especially when it comes to termite inspections and treatments. A quality pest professional will not undervalue their skill and expertise. They will take time to carry out a professional and thorough treatment. Pricing should vary depending on the nature of the job and size of the property. However, as well as asking the price, ask how long the treatment will take. If a company is not prepared to say how long it will take or indicates a time a lot quicker than alternative quotes, you should be wary.