Get The Right Advice & Pest Control Company For A Better Outcome
Over the last 20 years of doing pest control throughout Brisbane, Ipswich and the Gold Coast I’ve noticed a big change.
Some of the changes are of great benefit to the industry, but others I feel are bringing the industry into a very dark era.
We’ll talk about the good and the bad of the pest control industry and why not to use any old company later.
When I first did my pest management course some 20 years ago now, it was quite an in-depth course, that was full of great information for new people coming into the pest control industry.
The course I did for my general pest license was over 3 weeks, and this included written assignments and practicals, all of which had to be completed before you received your license.
I felt I’d learnt a lot during the course and it gave me the confidence to treat customers’ homes for any type of pest except termites, I did the termite course a few years later.
To be able to treat a customer’s home for termites a pest manager will need what is called an open license, this is another course that needs to be completed in just timber pests.
When I did my course I remember asking the lecturer how many people fail it, and his response was no one fails; this is probably because the organisers don’t want people to think that their course is too hard, as this would bring down enrolments. At the end of the day for the organisers of the courses, it’s just a business for them; it’s how they make their money.
Pest Control License
As I’ve explained earlier there are two different types of pest license, the general one allows a technician to deal with any general household pests, such as cockroaches, silverfish, spider, ants etc.
The one pest that can’t be treated under a general license is timber pests meaning termites; these little house eating critters are only for those that have done a course on termite management and control.
On the back of a pest controllers license it will have written the words “Timber Pests” this means they are fully licensed to deal with termites.
As a customer you are well within your rights to ask the technician servicing your home, to show their license and they should have it on them at all times.
If they don’t have the license on them the best thing to do is tell them to come back when they do.
Now let’s have a look into the pros and cons of the pest control world, I’ll be as honest as I can on this, and let’s not forget this is only my opinion, and opinions do vary.
The Pros In The Pest Control Industry
So let’s start off with the good things within the pest control industry. Well for starters the products that we use these days are excellent, they are safe for the family and pets when used correctly.
The companies that make the products like BASF and Amgrow etc., put in a lot of research into not only making them safer for us as pest controllers to use, but also for our customers.
These days everyone or at least the good majority of people want products that are safe and with low toxicity, the question I get asked the most is “are the products safe”
Another good point to make is that all products have to be passed by Qld Health before they can be used in a residential or commercial situation.
On the label of all products used within the pest control industry will state whether it can be used for residential or commercial premises, and will also state whether they can be used on the internal or external of the property or both.
Chemicals like Dieldrin and Chlorpyrifos have now been banned and cannot be used internally for treating pests; these two products were used a lot when I first came into the industry.
They worked very well and would get rid of any pest for a long time, but unfortunately, they are a known carcinogen, so not a safe pest control product to use.
Some say that the products we use today aren’t anywhere near as good as the old ones from 20 to 30 years ago and that may be true in some respects, but I can tell you now the ones used today are a million times safer and better for the environment.
Some people complain that the products of today don’t keep pests away for as long as the ones used years ago, but they will if mixed correctly and applied into the correct areas, where pests harbour.
The products used today are also odourless, this is of great benefit for those that suffer from asthma, but they still need to be used responsibly.
Today’s products are water soluble, and only need a very small amount of the concentrate to make a solution ready to treat a home. The amount we would mix in many cases would be something like 30ml to 10 litres of water, so as you can see it’s a very small amount of the actual product.
The actual amount mixed does depend on the type of product being used and in what situation it is intended to be used in.
The pest industry is highly regulated these days that’s for sure, but there are areas where it needs a lot of improvement, and we’ll go into that in the cons of the pest control industry.
The Cons In The Pest Control Industry
Ok so now let’s get onto the bad parts of the pest control industry, and remember this is only my opinion, and I’ve formed these opinions from what I’ve personally seen and heard over the past few years from customers and other pest controllers.
So as far as licensing goes in today’s world, I personally think it’s way too easy to get licensed. The courses for general pest control and termites these days are complete in 5 days.
5 days is not enough time for someone to become competent in dealing with pests and chemicals, and it certainly isn’t enough time to be dealing with termites.
The courses are run every week now, and each time they are absolutely full of new students and trust me some of the people on them you wouldn’t want in your home.
I think at the minute the money charged for these courses; which is around $1100 is just another tax to pay to the government, and then to actually get the license once the course is complete, there’s another fee that has to be paid to the Qld Health.
The license has to be renewed each year, at a cost of course again paid to Qld Health.
The focus I believe is on getting as many people through the courses as possible, the ones making the money are the people running the courses, as stated earlier it’s how they make their living, they don’t care who goes on the course so long as the seats are full.
The other problem being, there are so many technicians now in the pest industry the competition is huge, and this brings the price down, and when the prices come down so does the quality of the job.
The people that don’t care about the service side of pest control also don’t care about what or how they apply the products, and this puts the customer at risk in my opinion.
I know of guys that tell me they don’t even mix the right amounts according to the label, this is wrong in so many ways, again it not only puts the customer at risk but if they haven’t been mixed correctly they won’t even work as they are meant too.
I was doing pest control for a customer just a few days ago, and she was telling me she had a termite inspection done about 8 months ago, so she said she would use us next time whilst doing the general pest service.
The pest controller that did the inspection didn’t give her a receipt or even write a report, a report should be given with every inspection done.
The whole point of doing an inspection is to give a detailed report outlining any areas of concern, like areas that may be conducive to termite attack.
Reports should be kept by the customer as a reference, at least until the following year when the next inspection is due.
So all the new and uneducated people coming into the pest control industry are giving the industry a bad name, and also putting homes at risk.
Too many people on the courses can only just speak English it’s just not good enough, so if they can’t communicate properly with customers how can they give good advice.
The short of it is most of the new pest controllers these days don’t give any real advice, and the reason for this is they just don’t know anything about pests or the chemicals or even how to communicate with customers.
In most cases these days there is no warranty given, this is partly because the prices some of these guys are charging just don’t stack up if you’re going to get cheap pest control done you just have to accept the fact there will be no backup.
Cheap jobs mean cuts are being made somewhere, and usually that’s in the materials being used and the warranties are given, or in most cases not given.
Another big problem area is with franchises, these companies turn over a huge amount of people each and every year. For me a franchise is the biggest con of them all, anyone that goes into one is obviously not suited to running a business.
If you engage the services of a company that deals in franchises to do your pest control service, you can pretty much guarantee that the same technician won’t be out the following year, because more than likely they won’t be in business, they just don’t last long at all.
That’s why the franchisers stay in business and make lots of money, is because of the huge turnover of staff buying new franchises, it’s as simple as that, they couldn’t keep recruiting like they do if they actually worked.
If a franchise worked the person that purchased it would have a great business and there would be no room for anyone else to buy a franchise, there are only so many areas in each city that can be sold; the simple fact is Franchises don’t work, and that’s why they are constantly being sold over and over again.
A franchise is where most newcomers to the pest industry try to get started, they turn to a franchise because they have no idea on how to set up or run a business, they are getting someone else to do all of that for them, so why would you trust them to come into your home to spray around chemicals, if they can’t even run a business properly.
Franchised businesses are full of inexperienced people that have no idea about pest control or termite management.
As you can see the cons are a lot longer than the pros, which is a pretty good sign that something needs to be done in regards to licensing.
Choose Your Pest Control Company Wisely
You shouldn’t just use any old pest control company, by now it should be obvious; that is if you have read the whole blog.
In a nutshell, a lot of technicians within the pest control industry just don’t care, and they have no idea what they are doing and offer no warranty.
So why would you place your trust in them and waste your money on a second-rate job, that you could quite easily do yourself?
Because of the low quality of training and inexperience; customer just is not getting what they should out of an annual pest or termite treatment.
I see it all the time, when I go out to a new customer’s house; they start to tell me about the last guy they used, (They gave no warranty – They didn’t answer phone – They wouldn’t come back – They didn’t get rid of any pests) and the list goes on.
I am a great believer in the good old saying you get what you pay for, that is certainly the case when it comes to the pest control industry, and most certainly when dealing with termites.
The lack of customer service with cheap overnight pest control companies that only last a few months just isn’t worth paying the money for, if you are going to pay peanuts then expect to get a Monkey.
I was at a job a few days ago, I was called in to deal with a cockroach problem, when I arrived I asked the customer some questions, and he went on to tell me that he’d only just had it done 2 months prior.
So I said well why not just call them back to retreat, he told me; he had got hold of them but there was no warranty, because they were the German cockroaches he had a problem with, and it would cost more to come and treat again.
This is exactly what I’m talking about, a lot of companies don’t care and they don’t explain anything to the customer if this was the case; then the company that did the initial service should have explained it to the customer before they started the job, and given them some options.
But Oh no let’s just take the money and run, that’s pretty much what this company did, and where does that leave the customer, of course out of pocket.
If this sort of thing happens to you, you should write a review of the business on social media, on places like Google Plus or Facebook etc.
Don’t be fooled into getting a cheap pest treatment done, it’s just not worth the risk in having someone in your home, spraying chemicals around that doesn’t have any idea what they are doing, and this is even more crucial when dealing with termites.
Now, this may seem like a bit of a rant the further you got into this blog, but as far as I’m concerned the more information people have on the pest control industry and understand how it works; the better decision they can make on which company they decide to use for their next pest control service.
If you have any questions you would like me to answer, please either leave them in the comments below or send us an email.