Pest control companies prevent and eradicate bug and rodent infestations in homes and other property. They may also provide wildlife removal services. Like other service providers, many pest control companies work on long-term contracts as opposed to offering one-time treatments. Canceling contracts can prove difficult without paying a large cancellation fee or paying out monthly fees through the end of the contract’s life.
Popular Pest Control Companies and Their Contracts
Orkin is the leading pest control company in the United States. Other popular pest control providers include:
- Ecolab Pest Control.
- Bell Environmental Services.
In some regions of the United States, it’s rare to see pests, except in unkempt homes or those with water problems. In other regions, bugs and rodents are almost guaranteed unless preventive measures are in place. Whatever the conditions in a region, there could be benefits to a monthly or quarterly pest control service contract.
Unfortunately, some pest control companies have a bad reputation for tricking clients into signing contract agreements. Worse, what a service technician says is included in the contract might conflict with the treatments actually applied or with the terms of the company’s contract. It’s important to look over a company's cancellation policy and guidelines for whichever provider you choose.
It’s not just small, independently owned companies pulling scams. Orkin was ordered to pay a Mississippi couple $2.6 million for fraudulent terms in their contract resulting in termite damage, and a Louisiana flood victim sued the company for providing fraudulent mold service that destroyed her home.
Reasons to Cancel a Pest Control Agreement
Technically speaking, the Federal Trade Commission determined that property owners don’t need any reason to cancel a contract or service agreement with any pest control company. The three-day cooling-off rule allows consumers to cancel contracts made for future services within 72 hours of signing the contract.
If a consumer invites a pest control service to his home for an inspection or a one-time treatment for emergency pest services, any long-term contract signed at the time may be canceled within 72 hours, as usual. States have their own cancellation rules that often provide even more protection. While consumers can call the company, sometimes it’s best to mail a cancellation letter.
Read More: 72 Hour Contract Laws
How to Cancel a Contract When You Move
Consumers should cancel a pest control contract if they move and they’re unable to receive the service any longer. This situation negates all types of service contracts, from pest control to internet and cable subscriptions. After calling to cancel or mailing a cancellation letter, the consumer should request written confirmation of the cancellation.
Cancel a Service Contract When the Terms Change
Sometimes, the terms of a service agreement change. A big enough change in policy affects the value of the service and can be grounds for terminating a contract early without penalty. Voided warranties for termite control are a great example.
In recent years, more homeowners have invested in spray foam insulation. It does an outstanding job of raising a home’s energy efficiency and cutting monthly bills and energy waste. The problem? It also hides termite and rodent infestations. It’s such a big risk that many pest control providers won’t continue to guarantee their work once spray foam insulation is in place.
If a consumer’s pest control provider changes terms regarding warranty information, she may have the right to cancel the service contract.
How to Meet the Requirements of a Cancellation Policy
Sometimes the service contracted for just isn’t needed anymore. This is where the pest control company's cancellation policy comes in handy. For example, anytime after the initial one-year contract is up, Orkin requests that consumers send the company a cancellation letter providing 30-days notice of service termination.
Read More: How to Cancel a Service Agreement
- WBRZ: Flood Victim Says Orkin Treated Her Home for Mold, Orkin Disagrees
- Pest Control Technology: Foam-Friend or Foe?
- The Florida Attorney General's Office: How to Protect Yourself-The Cooling-Off Rule
- Legal Beagle: How to Cancel a Service Agreement
- Legal Beagle: 72 Hour Contract Laws
- Legal Beagle: How Can I Report a Fraudulent Business to the Media?
- Legal Beagle: How to Terminate a Contract for Services
With over 20 years of professional writing experience, Hilary Ferrand knows her way around the interwebs. Find out more by following her at LinkedIn.