How much does a Bed Bug Exterminator Cost?
If you are looking up this article, chances are that you already have a bed bug infestation in your home or place of business. Before we tell you how much you will have to spend to have bed bugs professionally removed by an exterminator, we must first tell you that you have made the right decision to avail the services of a professional bed bug exterminator, instead of attempting to rid the infestation on your own.
While you can handle very small bed bug infestations with DIY pesticide treatments and vacuuming, larger infestations of the very pesky parasite that is a bed bug will almost always require heavy duty treatment solutions that can only be provided by the best bed bug exterminator you can find in your area.
Bed bug exterminator cost: What can you expect?
First of all, you must know that a bed bug exterminator does not use a one-treatment-fits-all solution for all bed bug infestations. Bed bugs are a complex problem. Because these parasites can hide just about anywhere in the home, under carpets, in curtains, in headboards and even in cracks and crevices, only an exterminator can truly understand the scale of problem you have in your home or business establishment.
We will discuss the various methods that will typically be used by an exterminator a bit later. But, to begin with, let’s give you a quick rundown on the costs you can expect to pay.
Bed Bug Inspection
$50 to $200
The bed bug exterminator companies first start with a very thorough inspection. If you think you have an infestation just in one single room, an inspection might only cost you $50. If bed bugs are present throughout your home, an exterminator might charge $200 just to inspect the entirety of your home, to understand the scale of the infestation problem.
Some bed bug exterminator companies will also provide a canine inspection. Since dogs have a 96% bed bug detection rate, they are great allies to exterminators during the inspection phase. A canine inspection can cost you anywhere from $300 to $600, depending on the size of your home or business establishment.
Though $50 to $200 might sound like a sizable expense, you must understand that is a necessary one to identify and detect all bed bugs present in your home. Also, some bed bug exterminator companies will include the cost of inspection into their extermination services, if you decide to hire them for the job.
Bed bug treatment
$4 to $8 per square foot or $250+ per room, or $2,000 to $4,000 per home
Now, it will be very difficult to provide a correct estimate of how much it will cost to actually treat the bed bug problem in your home. It will depend on various factors such as the extent of infestation, the difficulty of tackling the infestation and other factors like follow up and additional treatments that might be required.
Generally however, you can expect to pay $4 to $8 per square foot for bed bug treatment by an extermiantor. In other words, if your master bedroom has dimensions of 10’ x 12’ feet, you are looking at about 120 square footage that will cost anywhere from $480 to almost $1,000 to fix.
In some cases, a bed bug extermination company might be able to charge a flat rate for a single room, sometimes as little as $250.
Treatment methods used by bed bug exterminators
Before you read about each of the treatment methods used by exterminators, you must know that it is common practice for an exterminator to use a combination of all the below listed treatment methods. Using a variety of treatment methods will mean that the bed bug infestation is wiped out without any room for error.
Fumigation has a 99% kill rate. To let an exterminator fumigate your home to rid it of bed bugs, you need to vacate the home. The exterminator will set up a tarpaulin and release Vikane or another gas that will kill bed bugs in all stages of life.
The advantage to this method is that the fumigation will also kill ants, termites and other pests that might be coexisting along with bed bugs.
Though the method is very effective, you will need to leave your home and stay elsewhere for about 2-3 days, until the process is completed, and until the dangerous gases are completely vented.
Heat treatments are very, very effective and have a 100% kill rate. In this treatment process, hot air is pumped into the infested rooms to raise the temperature to 120° and this temperature is maintained for a minimum of 2 hours. Such high temperatures kill bed bugs in all life stages.
Once the treatment is over, you can immediately enter your home and live in it, after letting it cool down just a bit.
Regardless of whether the exterminator you hire uses heat treatment or fumigation to rid your bed bug problem, they will invariably use pesticides as well. This is because pesticides, in their liquid form, can be injected into cracks and crevices where heat and fumigation might not have a 100% penetration rate.
Steaming is another ancillary extermination process where a commercial steamer is used to pass steam over areas that require penetration. For example, an exterminator might use a steamer to run several passes of steam over a mattress that might have a bed bug infestation several layers under the top of the mattress.
In extreme cases, the home’s entire structure might need fumigation if it is under siege by a very large scale bed bug infestation. In such extreme cases, a process called structural fumigation is carried out over several days. This can cost anywhere between $5,000 and even run up to as high as $50,000 for very extreme cases.
In conclusion, we will say it will be a wise decision to find the best bed bug exterminator you can find, even if it will cost more than do it yourself treatment methods. By using a combination of treatment methods and very thorough inspections, they can ensure that your home is completely rid of bed bug infestations. Remember, bed bugs are capable of multiplying very quickly and can live without food for several months together, making them a potentially dangerous problem if you do not take the necessary action to completely wipe them out.