One of the most unnerving experiences a homeowner can endure is having wildlife break into your home. The reality is we share this space with a wide array of other creatures and these animals are getting more and more comfortable existing in an urban setting. As time goes on many species are less afraid of humans, and may even associate our presence with food. As a result, the likelihood of a pest such as a raccoon or a squirrel breaking into your home is consistently increasing.
It can be intimidating and frustrating having a wildlife issue in your home. And although time is of the essence, do not rush out and hire the first company that you come across. Wildlife removal and prevention is an unregulated industry, and as such anyone with a screwdriver and some internet savvy can come across as trained professionals. Having said that, the overwhelming majority of outfits out there are qualified. But a little due diligence is in order when making your choice. Here a few key factors to consider when choosing a wildlife removal company:
Experience / Reputation
In the wildlife removal industry, there can be a significant variance between competence levels and quality of services offered. Unfortunately, the reality is there is nothing stopping a subpar operator from setting up shop in your town. Whether it's due to an inexperienced, cheaper workforce or simply a lack the knowledge and expertise; it's important to do a little homework before hiring a company to work on your home.
The good news is doing a quick background check on a prospective company has never been easier. Here are a few key factors you want to consider:
- How long have they been in business? The longer a company has been in business, the better they should be able to exceed a customer's expectations. This can be verified through various online resources, don't just take their word for it. The Better Business Bureau will have a date displayed for each organization, this is a good indicator of how long they have been in business. Also, if you go to the companies website and look through their posts, see how far back they date. Another great resource is google, keep an eye out for dates in the search results relating to content or mentions in the media, etc.
- Online Reviews: Online review vehicles such as Google, Homestars and Better Business Bureau are becoming increasingly popular tools. Any company that has been in business longer than a few months should have at least a few customer reviews. Keep in mind a few bad reviews are not necessarily indicative of poor workmanship. read a good sample size and exercise common sense in making your judgment. Having said that, the vast majority of the reviews should be overwhelmingly positive.
- Direct Reference: One of the best way to get a feel for a companies competence and level of professionalism is to speak with previous customers who have worked with this company. Any company with a solid reputation will be able to provide a few local references to help you establish a comfort level with their service.
Be aware, many companies will over blanket warranties and various assurances, which is great at face value. Just keep in mind that a companies warranty is useless if they go out of business. Make sure the company you work with is well established and has been in business in that locati0n for several years.Process
The next most important consideration when choosing a wildlife removal company is to ensure they employ humane and effective processes. You want to make sure the company does not employ cruel measures such as traps and poison. These methods have a negative impact on more than just the local wildlife population and have proven to be highly ineffective. On top of being humane, you want to ensure they use effective processes and are knowledgeable in the specific areas you need assistance with.
Here are a few great questions to ask a potential company. This will help you gauge their knowledge and experience level:
- What steps do you take to humanely and permanently evict the animal(s)?
- How to you check to see if any offspring are present in the space?
- How do you prevent this same problem from reoccurring?
- What happens to any mess made by the animals or the work itself?
- Whom do we contact in case of an emergency and how quickly do you respond of the animal returns?
- Do you have a warranty and what does it cover?
Regardless of your knowledge level when it comes to choosing a wildlife removal company, you should be able to get a good read on the company by asking them these questions.
Between all the online resources available to research a company, previous customer references and a few pointed questions; you will be equipped to hire the right wildlife removal company with confidence.