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Sometimes it seems like you just can’t trim your budget any more. You’re already reading this website, using coupons, scanning the Internet for deals, and even doing your own car maintenance. The well of penny pinching is dry. But is it? One of the cornerstones of thrifty living is doing things yourself, and with all the information we have access to these days, there’s almost no limit to what you can learn to do yourself and that includes pest control.
The Internet is Your Friend
Pest control is one of those parts of home maintenance that is often an afterthought until it is a necessity. It’s also one of those things that cause us to reach for the phone and make an appointment with a company, only to discover a pricey bill or an inconvenient visit from a stranger. But what if you could just do it yourself? The Internet makes it really easy to learn new skills and being your own pest control professional is among them. It seems intimidating, but there are tons of reputable sources to use. University extension websites often offer detailed guides on a wide variety of common household and garden pests to help you identify and get rid of your problem.
You can learn exactly how to get rid of those roaches in your kitchen or the bees in your yard, but it isn’t as simple as buying a can of raid and calling it a day. This is where the money saving comes in. You can do a professional grade pest control treatment without ever hiring a company. Do-it-yourself pest control retailers specialize in selling the exact same products and tools professionals use in pest control for low, relatively affordable prices.
Is It Legal to Do Your Own Pest Control?
Yes, definitely. As long as you are only treating your own property you have every right to do your own pest control. There are some states that prohibit the use of certain chemicals, however.
DIY vs. Hiring an Exterminator – Price Breakdown
It can be tricky to price out pest control company services because often times they will not give out prices unless they come out to your home for an assessment. However, a quick online search can reveal a handful of companies across the country that lists their prices for various services. All exterminators charge differently for all services, using different metrics to charge you. It could be per pest, per foot, per hour, etc.
The best way to see the comparison is to look at general pest control treatments. General treatments usually include a one-time application of a product that can combat a wide variety of insect pests, like ants and cockroaches, indoors or outdoors. Follow up applications are often an additional fee. Let’s take a look at prices for general treatments from different companies:
Costs to Hire a Company:
- Terminix: $275 one-time, $425/year
- Orkin: $275 one-time, $595/year
- Random company in Pennsylvania: $100-190 one time
- Random company in Louisiana: $150-250 one time
- Random company in Arkansas: $80 one time
- Random company in Kansas: $200/ year
The good news is that some of these companies list exactly what they plan on using in your home. Doing a quick search for these products (Termidor and Phantom) will reveal that you can get a 20-ounce bottle of either of these chemicals for about $50-60. You’ll need a sprayer for these products, since they need to be diluted and sprayed with a pump sprayer, and those will run you between $20-50 depending on what type you choose to buy. One 20-ounce bottle of a professional product will yield nearly 30 applications. This breaks down to only $3 a gallon, plus the time you’ll put in doing the work.
Consider The Pros and Cons
There are many things to think about when choosing to undertake a DIY project like this. The very nature of doing things your self is rolling up your sleeves and getting a bit dirty. It takes time and hard work to be your own exterminator, but it’s the perfect way to shave hundreds of dollars off your expenses for the year. Is it easier to simply call up a local company and have the guys come out and treat your home? Of course, but doing it yourself not only saves you money, but puts you in complete control of the quality and thoroughness of the treatments. Use web-based pest control retailers to buy the exact same products, equipment, and techniques a professional company would use all while saving you money. What’s more thrifty than that?