Pests are more than just an eyesore. These scurrying invaders pose a serious health and safety risk for homeowners, property managers, and business owners. Some pests, like rats and termites, can inflict serious structural damage, costing tens of thousands of dollars. By working with a good pest control company, you can spot potential problems early and eliminate them before they become full-blown infestations.
This article outlines everything you need to know about the price of pest control services. We’ll look at the baseline pricing of pest control, the cost of different service options, and if DIY pest control is cheaper. Additionally, we’ll look at what factors affect your home’s average pest control cost, like location, pest type, and infestation level.
What Is the Average Cost of Pest Control?
For an annual pest control plan on a standard 2,000-square-foot home, homeowners can expect to pay anywhere from $350 to $850, with an average cost of $300 to $500. Beyond basic pest control plans, there are many specialty services with varying prices. Termites, for example, are not typically covered under most standard plans and require special baits and trained personnel to exterminate. Termite treatments can run anywhere from $500 to $3,000 or more, depending on the infestation’s severity.
What Are the Most Common Types of Pests and Their Treatment Costs?
The first thing every homeowner should understand about pest control is the prices associated with each type of common pest. Some pests are relatively inexpensive and included in most basic pest control services. Other pests, like termites, rodents, and bed bugs, commonly require specialized removal and will cost much more.
The following table outlines some common household pests and how much you can expect to pay to exterminate them.
|Ants (typically carpenter ants)||$150–$450|
|Mosquitos||$75–$500 per season|
|Roaches||$150–$500 per treatment|
|Termites||$500–$3,000+ ($145 inspection)|
Ants: Ants are best controlled with liquid insecticide and bait traps. The benefit of these control methods is that they’re almost always effective at keeping ants out and killing their nest. The downside is that sprays and traps may not be pet or child safe.
Bats: In most cases, bats cannot be exterminated since they’re considered protected animals. Instead, you must hire a pest control company for relocation and exclusion — this process involves getting these critters out and then sealing possible entry points.
Bed Bugs: Bed bugs can be expensive to exterminate. Depending on the size, nature, and location of the bed bug infestation, pest control companies will use varying methods for removal. Removal methods include heat treatments, pesticide powder, mattress encasements and removal, crack or spot treatment, and fumigation.
Fleas: Flea treatments typically comprise cleaning of flea-infected areas combined with pesticide.
Moths: Pest control companies can use sprays or fumigation to remove moths. Both methods kill moths quickly but can require the residents to vacate the home until the fumes have cleared.
Mosquitoes: The most effective means for eliminating mosquitoes is consistent repeat treatment of nesting areas to kill young larvae and eggs. This treatment, while effective, requires constant reapplication throughout the mosquito season.
Roaches: For light cockroach problems, spraying can be effective, but for complete infestations, fumigation is typically needed. Cockroaches are some of the most difficult pests to get rid of for good, but fumigation is typically effective.
Rodents: Pest control professionals use a combination of bait stations and physical traps to get rid of mice. Once most of the mice are dead, the company will typically remove the dead animals and clean out their nests.
Silverfish: Pesticides or widespread application of diatomaceous earth is typically the most effective method for removing silverfish. Diatomaceous earth is safe for humans and pets while highly lethal to insects, making it ideal for inside pests like silverfish.
Spiders: Pest control companies use a combination of pesticides and the destruction of nest areas to eliminate spiders. Most pesticides for spiders can be sprayed outside the home for exclusion, making them effective and non-intrusive.
Termites: Termites are among the most difficult pests to eliminate due to how deeply they can ingrain themselves into your home. Most pest control companies use specially designed baits and sprays to eliminate termites at their source.
Spotting termites early is essential in keeping your home in one piece. Look for small piles of sawdust-like droppings called frass along baseboards and walls. Additionally, in the springtime, watch out for discarded sets of wings on windowsills. Both of these are telltale signs of termite invasions.
Ticks: Sprays and granules combined with good lawn care are the best ways to keep ticks out of your property. Unfortunately, while effective, some common tick pesticides can be toxic to local wildlife, including cats.
Wasps: Pest control companies use sprays combined with the physical destruction of nests to eliminate most wasps. Some species, such as ground-dwelling wasps, can require more specialized treatment, which will cost more than standard wasp control.
Wood-boring beetles: Like termites, wood-boring beetles can be extremely difficult to remove. Fumigation is one of the most effective ways to clear them out of your home, but you and your family must vacate the premises in the meantime.
What Factors Affect Pest Control Pricing?
Beyond pest type, numerous factors can impact pest control costs. Anything that makes the removal process more difficult or time-consuming will add to your bill. Here is a list of every major factor that can affect the price of your pest control service:
- The size of your home and the property’s condition: The larger the home or business, the more labor hours and materials are needed to protect it.
- The location and accessibility of the infested areas: Hard-to-reach areas can require specialized tools, or more time-consuming approaches to navigate, making them more expensive to treat.
- The severity and extent of the infestation: Larger infestations will be more difficult to exterminate, requiring extra labor hours, materials, and specialized techniques.
- The type of treatment and quality of the products: Some pests can be difficult to exterminate, requiring more expensive and higher-quality treatments.
- The frequency of service and duration of the contract: Some pests will require more frequent or intensive treatment services. These situations will carry a higher cost compared to standard services.
- Region: Some regions and climates in the United States will have more dangerous pests, or a greater variety of pests, making treatments and inspections more costly.
How Do Pest Control Service Options and Costs Compare?
When working with a pest control company, homeowners can choose between several different types of services, specifically annual, quarterly, monthly, and one-time services. Here is the average cost breakdown for different service increments for pest control companies:
- One-time visit: This one-time treatment includes an inspection, diagnosis, treatment, and follow-up (if needed), costing $150 to $350. Single visits can be great options for removing light infestations or nuisance pests. A single visit can handle wasps, ants, and most wildlife calls.
- Monthly service: After an initial visit, with an average cost of $125 to $300, this recurring service provides regular monthly inspections and treatments, costing between $50 to $75. Some pests can require regular treatment for a time to remove completely, making this service choice ideal. A monthly service often handles rodents, termites, and wood-boring beetles.
- Quarterly service: Quarterly visits provide regular inspections and treatments every three months, costing between $125 to $300. This service option works best for homes where pests are common or businesses needing constant pest control treatments.
- Annual service: A recurring service that provides regular inspections and treatments once a year, costing between $125 to $500. Some pests are only a seasonal problem, requiring a yearly service to prevent them. This service handles pests like ticks, mosquitoes, spiders, and wasps.
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How To Minimize the Cost When Hiring a Pest Control Company
While pest control can be expensive, especially in the case of severe infestations, there’s plenty you can do to reduce exterminator costs. The first best way to save money is to shop intelligently for the right pest control company.
To do this, always thoroughly research local pest control companies beforehand. We recommend looking at work history, customer service reviews, and common complaints. Then, once you’ve found a few promising candidates, compare multiple quotes from those choices. With this approach, you can find the best company for the most reasonable price.
Additionally, you can save money by being conscious of your home’s pest problems and taking preventative measures to mitigate them. For example, if your home is prone to mosquitoes, take active steps to keep them away, like eliminating standing water. By undertaking basic pest management practices, you can reduce the number of inspections and treatments needed by pest companies.
DIY Vs. Professional Pest Control: Which One Is Better?
Many homeowners opt for DIY pest control. This approach can sometimes save you money, but it isn’t enough to handle a serious infestation. If your home is experiencing major pest problems, it’s always best to go with a pest control company. Pest control professionals have the skills, equipment, and experience to properly diagnose and deal with the infestation.
Ultimately, each approach has its benefits and drawbacks.
DIY Pest Control Pros and Cons
- Cheaper up-front cost
- More control over products and methods
- Less effective and can’t handle major infestations
- More time-consuming
- No guarantee or warranty
Professional Pest Control Pros and Cons
- More effective, it can handle pest infestations of any size
- Faster and less labor on the part of the homeowner
- More safe and eco-friendly
- More expensive up-front cost
- Less control over products and methods
So, What’s Our Take on the Cost of Pest Control?
Pest control is essential in securing the safety and comfort of your home. While plenty of DIY options are available, to be fully protected against pests, you’ll need the help of a professional. We recommend Terminix as the best pest control company to go with. Terminix has multiple service plans covering most household pests, with additional options for termites, bed bugs, and mosquito removal.
The cost of professional pest control will vary depending on factors like the location of your house, the type of pest you’re dealing with, and the infestation level. However, pest control costs typically range between $350 to $800 annually for standard plans. For more specialized services, like termite control, you can typically expect to pay between $500 and $3,000.
FAQs About Pest Control Costs
Is paying for professional pest control worth it?
Ultimately, the answer will depend on your situation and budget. There are a few instances where you might be able to get rid of the problem yourself if you have a small infestation and you have the time to dedicate to it.
However, it’s usually better to call in a professional as soon as possible for extensive infestations. Professional technicians have the training, experience, and equipment to do the job quicker and more thoroughly than most homeowners. They’ll also be able to guide you through some prevention strategies to keep the problem from coming back. This will often save you money in the long run.
What are the advantages of paying for pest control services?
A professional pest control company can identify, target, and eliminate current and potential future pest problems more effectively and efficiently than at-home methods. Ultimately, professional pest control services offer homeowners peace of mind while taking the stress of pest issues off their shoulders.
How long does pest control last?
This will depend on the type of pests and the control strategies used. Traps or pesticides might kill off an infestation in a few weeks but require regular maintenance visits to keep the pests out. In general, however, insecticide treatments tend to keep killing pests for about six weeks and will keep them away for 60–90 days. However, thorough termite mitigation can often control the problem for at least five years.
What are some of the pests that are commonly exterminated?
Common pests that professional exterminators deal with include ants, wasps, bees, termites, bed bugs, earwigs, and spiders.