8 min read
How to Start a Pest Control Business
The 23 billion dollar pest control market expects continued growth in the coming years. If you want to be a part of this growing market to earn some serious cash, you have already taken the first step in the right direction by searching “how to start a pest control business?” It doesn’t matter if you want to start a pest control business because you are tired of working for someone else or if you are looking to switch from another trade or home service. You can start a pest control business by following the steps below:
Conduct Market Research
Pests are a problem no matter where you live. However, a region's weather and environmental conditions can favor certain kinds of pests. Therefore, the first step in starting a pest control business involves identifying the common pest problems in your area.
A simple way to identify these problems is to conduct market research and find out the services provided by local pest control businesses. Once you have identified all the pest issues, you can decide if you want to provide a niche service focused on a specific kind of pest or general services that deal with all pest problems. If you feel indecisive, choose the niche with the highest demand or the one you are most skilled in.
Write a Business Plan
As the name suggests, a business plan includes detailed plans for running a business. It includes business description and overview, services list, pricing strategies, market research and analysis, competition analysis, roles and responsibilities for running the business, employee planning, marketing plans, and financial projections. Don’t forget to add a table of contents in the beginning. A table of contents will make it easier to refer to different sections.
A business plan is an essential component needed for securing a business loan from the bank. However, even if you have the funds to start a pest control business, writing a business plan will keep you focused on the right steps for your business at all times. It can also act as a guidebook for your business operations and help you manage the business for years to come.
Get Trained & Licensed
Pesticides can be very dangerous if used incorrectly. For this reason, pesticides are only sold to trained and licensed individuals who can use pesticides with complete safety measures. A federal license is essential to work as a pest control worker or own a pest control business. But depending on your state, you may also need a state license.
Besides getting these licenses, you will also need to maintain them in the long term to run a successful pest control business. You will need to take regular courses to stay informed and updated on the latest industry practices and techniques. Moreover, the licenses are issued for limited durations; you will need to update them every few years to maintain your business.
Register Your Company
Once you receive the training and license to work in the industry, you can register your pest control business. Here are the steps you will need to follow:
Register a Name
The name should reflect the services you offer, whether niche or general. It should also be easy to pronounce and remember. A simple name will increase your business’s recall value and earn you repeat customers. Come up with a few ideas that fit the requirements and find one that is available. Once you have confirmed the availability, register your business name.
After registering the name, get a logo designed for it. You can utilize apps like Adobe Photoshop or Canva for this purpose. But if you are not familiar with these apps, consider hiring a designer, so you like the brand identity of your business.
Select a Business Structure
There are three business structure options, i.e., partnership, sole proprietorship, or limited liability company (LLC) license. Most small businesses and trade companies register as limited liability companies or LLCs, as this structure protects businesses and owners if the business gets sued.
Name a Registered Agent
Registering an LLC requires naming a registered agent to handle the business documentation on behalf of the LLC. Once you name or select a registered agent, you can move on to the next step of registering your business.
Prepare and Submit Required Articles
Depending on the state, you may need to provide various documents for getting your business license. These documents may include some ID for verification of identity, license(s) for using pesticides, and an LLC operating agreement.
An LLC operating agreement defines the framework for a business’s operations. The operations for which it provides the framework can include ownership, voting rights, profit sharing, responsibilities, and governance. While not all states require an LLC operating agreement for a business license, getting one for every business is advisable. The LLC operating agreement can protect the business owner and the business in cases of unwanted demands, claims, and requests. Hence, preparing an LLC operating agreement alongside other important documents required for business is highly beneficial registration.
Once you have created and gathered all the documents, submit them with your application. You will receive the business license soon. Now, you can rent or buy a P.O. Box address to legitimize your business further. You can also open a bank account for your pest control business and register it for taxes at this point.
Build an Inventory
Get the bulk of all the essential pest control equipment to get a deal and save money. You will need the following items in your business inventory:
- LED flashlights
- Night vision cameras
- Infrared temperature sensors
- HEPA filtration vacuums
- Telescoping mirrors
- Ultrasonic pest repellant
- Bulb duster
- Basic toolkit
- Hole sealant
- Skid sprayer
- Backpack sprayer
- Foamer nozzle
- ULV fogger
- PPE including respirators, bee suit, safety googles, PVC gloves, and earmuffs
- First aid kit
- Chemical spill kit
This is just a basic list for any pest control business. Depending on the specialized services you intend to provide, you may need more special chemicals, repellants, traps, and tools. The chemicals you require may also depend on the area and property where you provide your services. So spend time researching and finding the most efficient tools and chemicals for your niche.
You may also need to buy a service van to transport all the equipment safely to and from clients’ properties. A storage space that fulfills the requirements for storing dangerous chemicals will also be required.
Sign Up for Insurance
The pest control business will require you to use dangerous chemicals and heavy-duty equipment at clients’ properties. Hence, you must get insurance to protect your workers, equipment, business, and yourself.
Sign up for an insurance policy offering general liability and commercial property insurance. Such a policy will cover physical harm, equipment damage, and your business’s and clients’ property damage. You can also benefit from workers’ compensation, auto, and business income insurance. Business income insurance ensures cash flow after a disaster and keeps the business running. As your business grows, update the insurance policy accordingly to keep your business safe.
Get a Website
The next step of starting a pest control business involves getting a website. Since people search for everything, they need online, getting a website is essential for all businesses in today’s times. A website makes the business look more professional, easily converting leads into customers.
While you can get a DIY website, hiring a professional service can make a significant difference. Your business website will be your online shop where customers will judge your ability to deliver the service they need. Hence, you need a professional service like Trady.com to make a lasting impression on your potential customers. Trady is a website-building service for trades. Building a website with Trady takes only a few minutes. The resulting websites are easy to navigate and contain exclusive features such as online booking and payments. Start your 14-day free trial to find other helpful features to gain more customers.
Market Your Business
With an online presence, you are ready to impress and book clients. But first, you must spread the word that your business exists and provides exceptional services. You can spread the word by marketing your business. Create social media profiles for your business. Business profiles on platforms like Yelp, MerchantCircle, Nextdoor, and Google Maps will also increase your business's searchability.
But marketing is more than creating profiles and posting about services on various social media profiles. You will need to develop digital marketing campaigns for each platform and create exclusive content to attract your target audience.
If it sounds overwhelming, get help with Trady.com again. Besides building business websites in minutes, the platform also provides end-to-end marketing for trades and home services. With your business’s marketing responsibility of Trady.com, you can stay focused on providing satisfactory services.
Start the Hustle
With successful marketing, you will soon begin getting clients. All you need to do now is provide exceptional services to earn your customers’ loyalty and testimonials.
In time, you can refer to the business plan and grow your pest control business to become the best in your area!