When contacting a wildlife and pest company to deal with a problem, for most the process and cost is a completely foreign concept. And as with most home service-related investments, quality wildlife removal and prevention is not a cheap proposition. So to help understand what goes into performing these services we have outlined and explained a few of the hidden costs commonly encountered.
Before a technician steps onto your property, there are a number of factors that have already been factored into the overall cost of your future services. I’ll touch on some of the more common ones:
- Office expenses: internet and software costs (accounting, scheduler, customer management software), phone lines, staff, paper cost (office materials), rent for shop and office
- Insurance: liability insurance, WSIB premiums, insurance for all company vehicles, benefits for employees.
- Training: work at height certification, new employee training, vaccinations
All of these costs have to be factored into the equation by any pest and wildlife company. Most companies will charge a service fee that will help cover the above considerations. As a general rule of thumb, smaller companies have less overhead than larger outfits as they often do not need a workshop or office staff and space.
The next consideration in costing wildlife and pest removal jobs is materials. This will vary significantly depending on the species you are dealing with and the scope of the issue. We will touch on a few of the staples of the industry to give you an idea of what is involved:
- Equipment: ladders, drills, safety equipment (tie in, ropes, harness etc), caulking gun etc
- Screening: most companies carry at least 3 variations of corrugated steel wiring used to block off vulnerable areas around your home.
- Caulking: a specially formulated wildlife exclusion formula, much better quality than off the shelf products. This ensures it will last decades instead of a few years.
- Nuts and bolts: all kinds of miscellaneous products, tools and equipment are necessary depending on the tasks at hand
The most significant expense for many companies is manpower. This is also where you can see the widest variance in cost from one outfit to another.
The main considerations once again are the size of the outfit and the experience level of the staff. The more experienced the technician, the more they are going to cost their employer.
When it comes to the size of the company, oftentimes smaller companies have owner-operators working with a smaller team, this can keep costs down. For larger operations, their manpower costs increase because when you have a larger staff, you need more support staff and extra roles such as supervisors and managers.
For these reasons, it’s hard to estimate what the manpower costs amount to. However, in most cases, they will be equal to or greater than all other expenses combined.
More To It Than You Thought?
When you first think about what the cost is for a service it’s easy to underestimate what goes into getting the job done properly. There are also several other expenses that are not listed, such as vehicle maintenance and repair, bank fees, permits and licenses. This was not meant to be a comprehensive list, it was intended to help you gain a little perspective.
The good news is you have several options in the majority of markets. So call a few companies and take the time to compare services closely. Not all companies provide the same exact preventative measures. Make sure you are comparing apples to apples. From there you will be able to make an educated choice.