How to Start a Pest Control Business in Florida
By Space Coast Daily // May 30, 2022
Starting any business can be exhausting, but if you’re tired of working for someone else, starting a pest control company is a great option. With the right steps, you can brand your new startup, protect your assets, gather equipment, and provide high-quality service for years to come.
How to Start a Pest Control Business in the State of Florida
Florida has a set of rules you’re required to meet before you can start a pest control business, but the majority of this article can be used across the US, including DC and Puerto Rico.
Determine What Services You’ll Provide
Since summertime in Florida is longer than in other states, pests are pretty common. It makes the most sense to offer general fumigation, but you can set yourself apart by offering speciality services like nest removal, trapping, in-home treatments, baiting, rodent control, among others.
Pest Control Licensing Required in Florida
There are 5 different pest control licenses in Florida:
■ Certified Pest Control Business Operator License: For individuals who own a pest control business. These licenses cost $310 and must be renewed every 4 years.
■ Commercial Landscape Applicator & Maintenance License: For commercial landscapers who wish to apply pesticides to ornamental plants and plant bests. $150.
■ Private Applicator or Limited Governmental License: For individuals who want to apply restricted and general materials for companies or government agencies. $150.
■ Limited Commercial Wildlife Management License: For individuals who want to trap rodents and pests without the use of pesticides (for green companies). $150.
■ Limited Fertilizer Applicator License: For individuals who want to apply restricted pesticides as the owner of a private residence or government employee. $150.
If you want to be fully certified, it’ll cost you $910 plus whatever pest control software or insurance you may need to stay legally compliant. It’s important to become certified before you roll out the finer details of your company, or you may be shut down before you even start.
Develop Your Value Proposition and Brand
There are quite a few pest control businesses in Florida, so you have to determine how you’ll set yourself apart from the competition. To determine your value proposition, ask yourself how you solve the client’s problems, what benefits they can expect, and what makes you different.
Once you have your value proposition you can start applying your messaging to your marketing. This includes your website, uniforms, vehicles, and social media pages. Your brand should feature a logo, tagline, font, color scheme, and name that’s memorable and eye-catching.
Identify Your Ideal Clients and Customers
Without customers you wouldn’t have a business, so it’s important to cater to them as much as possible. You can do this by developing a client persona, which includes information about who they are and what they need. The more info you gather, the easier it will be to upsell to them.
Keep in mind that the best pest control customers are businesses, government offices, property owners, apartment complexes, and property investors because they sign long-term contracts.
At the same time, your first clients may not be that prestigious as they likely work with another pest control company. That doesn’t mean they won’t consider your services in the future if you develop a good reputation. Start off on the right foot by marketing to existing pest control clients.
Hire Employees and Purchase Equipment
On a separate business bank account (never use your personal bank account for business transactions!), purchase the necessary equipment you’ll need for your company. You may need chemicals, applicators, traps, storage compartments, trucks/vehicles, and safety equipment.
While you may not need employees right away, at some point you’ll have to start the hiring process. If you’re turning down jobs or working exhaustive hours, you should hire staff ASAP.