Below is the 2018 national average price for residential pest control service in the Continental United States (with an annual agreement).
With Annual Contract
- Quarterly: $100 ($400/year)
- Bi-Monthly: $80 ($480/year)
- Monthly: $45 ($540/year)
- German Roach Initial Visit ($100 – $300)
Without Annual Contract
- Fleas ($150 – $350)
- Bed Bugs ($150 – $300 per room)
- German Roach Clean Out ($200 – $400)
- General Pest Control ($125 – $200)
**These prices are national averages and can differ depending on the variables listed below.**
Many factors go into the price of residential pest control service. When determining how much the service will cost, considerations must be made for the type of agreement, service frequency, type of pest, severity of infestation, size of the pest control company, the region you reside, and size of home.
- Type of Agreement
- Preventative vs Corrective
- Service Frequency
- Company Size
- State Laws and Regional Considerations
- Type of Pest and Severity of Infestation
- Size of Home
Type of Agreement
There are two types of agreements in the pest control industry: recurring and non-recurring. In business, revenue is king, but RECURRING revenue is the holy grail. Financial plans are far easier to execute when revenue is consistent and a steady stream of recurring revenue ensures this.
Annual agreements play a big factor in pricing because pest control businesses will almost always elect to make less on the front end of a transaction if they have a customer’s long-term commitment.
Non-recurring agreement/contract: often used when a customer has an existing problem they wish to eradicate, but do not want pest control services after the problem is resolved. Also known as a “One Time Service”, these agreements usually offer a 30, 60, or 90 day guarantee. If the pest returns before the guarantee expires, the company will retreat the home for no additional cost. Consumers often choose these types of agreements when dealing with flea, cockroach or bed bug infestations.
Recurring agreement/contract: most often used when a customer wants ongoing pest control services for a year or longer. Firms prefer these type of agreements because the agreements provide recurring revenue. For this reason, recurring contracts are usually more cost efficient than a non-recurring.
Preventive Versus Corrective
If your home has an existing pest issue, it may take extra effort to correct your pest problem. Because of this, most companies charge an “initial service” fee. They do this even if you sign up for a recurring service agreement. You will, however, find companies willing to waive the fee. This is often the case if you do not have existing issues and wish to prevent pest issues from arising.
For recurring residential pest control services, you’ll typically see three different service intervals: monthly, bi-monthly, and quarterly. A company’s monthly service will almost always cost more (on an annual basis) than it’s bi-monthly or quarterly services. This is because businesses save money on fuel, labor and pesticides by NOT servicing your home every thirty days. They, in turn, pass this savings on to you, the customer.
While monthly services were the industry standard for decades, most firms now prefer to service residential customers once every two months (bi-monthly) or once every three months (quarterly). With advancements in pest control products and treatment techniques, these companies believe they can provide protection just as good as that of a monthly service. To make this option attractive to consumers, many companies offer a guarantee that if your home needs retreated between regular service intervals, they will perform the additional service at no cost to you. It’s important to note, however, that not all companies carry such guarantees. Some firms charge for each and every visit.
For the most part, the larger more well-known companies will charge more for pest control services than the smaller, lesser-known businesses. While corporations like Wal-Mart, Amazon, and McDonald’s leverage their size to streamline expenses, big pest control companies aren’t able to share the same advantage.
While the pest control industry has seen technological advances in routing/scheduling, GPS, and better pesticides, the business model is far too labor intensive for expense reductions to coincide with increased revenue. If anything, company growth has an adverse effect on operation costs. This is due, in part, to employee turnover. While this article won’t delve into the reasons why larger pest control companies have such greater turnover rates than smaller companies, it’s important to understand that turnover is a huge concern for most large firms.
When we think of turnover in most industries, things like recruiting costs, training wages, and licensing/certifications come to mind. In pest control, however, you’ll see a significant correlation between employee and customer departure. Because of this connection, companies with high turnover will also spend much greater amounts on their advertising budgets. They do this to help maintain their large customer base.
Don’t get me wrong, large pest control firms have their advantages. Extensive employee screening, self-service customer portals and 24/7 customer support are all great advantages offered by the big boys. The point I’m trying to make is that larger companies must charge higher service fees because, even percentagewise, they carry much higher overhead.
State Laws and Regional Considerations
Let’s face it, the living expenses of some areas in the U.S. are higher than others. Because of this, wages fluctuate between these areas. As mentioned earlier, pest control services are labor intensive, so naturally, higher wages will bring higher service fees.
In addition to wages, some state and local governments are much more highly regulated than others. This too can create higher pest control prices, as companies operating in these areas must spend additional labor to ensure compliance with the state or local laws.
Type of Pest and Severity of Infestation
I think it goes without saying that the severity of an infestation could affect the price of pest control service. A sighting of a single cockroach will not warrant the same efforts and challenges as an infestation that has manifested for years and years.
It’s also important to note that not all pests are created equal. While special circumstances might make any pest difficult to control, certain species are usually harder to manage than others. Be prepared to pay an additional 50-100% more for fleas, 75-300% for German roaches, and $150-$300 per room for bed bugs (heat treatments of the entire home could be even higher).
Size of Home
Compared to the factors mentioned above, the size of your home plays only a small role in the pricing of pest control services. Don’t get me wrong, it does indeed play a role, but not nearly as much as you would think. Obviously, larger homes carry larger fees, but rarely will preventative service for a 3,000 square foot home cost double than that of a 1,500 square foot home.
The Cost of Flea Treatments
There are a few pest treatments where the size of your home can play a large role. In the case of fleas, the square footage is an important factor in determining the price of pest control. This is because carpeted areas, amount of quarter round (and possibly baseboards), and potentially crawlspace areas are areas that need to be treated. The average price of flea eradication in 2018 ranges between ($150 – $350).
Bed Bug Treatment Costs
The severity of infestation and size of your home (or number of rooms requiring treatment) are the biggest contributors to the price of bed bug control. Even today, companies have different philosophies on which rooms should be treated. While some firms believe all rooms must be treated, others insist it is not always necessary to treat the entire home to gain control. Regardless of personal thoughts, ensure the company you choose offers a guarantee. Similar to flea control, the pricing of bed bug treatments varies greatly. The average price range in 2018 for a bed bug treatment ranges between $150 – $300 per room.
Pest Control For German Roaches
When pricing German Roach control, severity of infestation is the largest factor. German roaches are usually found in kitchens and bathrooms, but under favorable conditions, they can survive (and thrive) in any room of your home. Severe infestations often require a “clean out” which includes the use of a flushing agent and vacuum. Excluding clean outs, the price range of German roach control runs between $100 – $300 for the initial visit. Clean outs usually range between $200 – $400.