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Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:37 PM

Advice wanted: Pest control company is being a pest

Has anyone experienced something like this? Or know what to do about it?

About a year ago I hired a small local company to get rid of ants invading my house. I looked for one that used environmentally friendly materials.

They told me they did not do one-time treatments. I had to agree to four treatments. If I canceled before having all four, I had to pay a $375 early cancellation fee.

The guy that showed up was evasive about the stuff he sprinkled around the house foundation. I would have liked to cancel but didn't want to pay the fee. The final treatment was in October. I paid the bill and thought that was the end of it. I did not want to hire them again.

In January the company notified me that they were coming out that week to do another treatment. I said I did not want them to come as I didn't want to re-hire them. They told me in that case I owed them a $175 early cancellation fee. I told them I did not owe them a damned thing, that I'd paid for the required four treatments and that was the end of it.

They insist I owe the cancellation fee, and have been pestering me with emails, phone calls and letters. I don't answer them.

I looked through my paper files and computer files, and can't find any sort of paperwork or contract. I always file stuff like this, but there was nothing. I do remember signing something the guy from the company wanted me to sign. I can't remember if it was on an ipad or paper on a clipboard. This is driving me crazy. Did I have something in writing from them or not? My memory isn't as good as it used to be.

There was some kind of agreement of mine on the company's website, but they deleted my account so it's no longer there. In other words, I can find absolutely no proof of what I did or did not agree to. I clearly remember being told I had to agree to all 4 treatments and pay for them, which I did.

I don't feel I owe them anything. This ridiculous fee is for the privilege of not re-hiring them. Why should I pay for non-service?

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:40 PM

1. Tell them you want to see the document where this is specified & to which you agreed

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:41 PM

2. find a cheap lawyer to write a cease and desist letter

should be about the same price as the cancellation fee. but it will get them off your back and provide a record in case they try to sue you or cause credit problems. then be sure to go on a internet "review" spree.

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Response to Kali (Reply #2)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 02:23 PM

11. Do you have a consumer protection bureau?

They will usually give you the wording of the letter to write to them telling them to cease their harassment. No need to get a lawyer. I have done that in Canada and it stopped immediately.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:44 PM

3. Mention that you are filing a complaint with your state's attorney general,

Or the Consumer Protection Bureau. It can work wonders.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:48 PM

4. Ask them to produce a copy of.....

your signed contract. If all things are as you say, to hell with them. You owe them nothing further.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:48 PM

5. Contact your local Better Business Bureau to

file a complaint and see if other complaints exist. Also they could probable advise you on next steps.

Might want to do this in the future before hiring any contractor.

Asking to see original paperwork is a good idea.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:53 PM

6. i need some good pest control..i found a dead ant in my infused honey this morning...

. do they really do four treatments? Are they pet safe?

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Response to samnsara (Reply #6)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 01:00 PM

8. One ant doesn't sound like a problem,

if you want to know a brand that works, it is for outside and pet safe, PM me if you want to check it out.

You may spend a couple hundred bucks getting set up but after that all you need to do is buy the ant juice.

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Response to samnsara (Reply #6)

Sun Apr 24, 2022, 04:57 PM

12. Most ants don't require professional pest control

Sugar ants respond to Terro Bait. (It's boric acid based)

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 12:56 PM

7. Can't help with your people problem,

but I can help with the ant problem. I had terrible issue with carpenter ants, nothing you buy in the big box stores works.

I guarantee this stuff that I found works on carpenter ants, there are formulas for other types of ants also.

PM me if you want the link.

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 01:27 PM

9. I would report them to the Better Business Bureau.

Unbelievable!

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Response to Wicked Blue (Original post)

Wed Apr 13, 2022, 02:17 PM

10. I would never pay a lawyer for something like this

but then, being the ultimate DIY'er, I wouldn't have hired the pest company either.

There used to be (and maybe there still is) a section of the consumer protection act that says that if you tell them in writing to not contact you again, they have to stop.

I did a little cursory googling around and found this:

https://www.consumerfinance.gov/ask-cfpb/how-can-i-stop-debt-collectors-from-contacting-me-en-1405/

They have to give you a copy of the contract, so if they don't, they probably don't have one. So:

just write a letter citing the Consumer Protection Law section and tell them you're not employing their services anymore and to stop bothering you. You shouldn't even have to cite the law, but these guys sound like real bullies and idiots, so if you can do so, do it.

If they contact you again, save evidence of the contact so if you have to, you have evidence to show an agency (BBB or whatever).

As far as the ants go, a $3 bottle of boric acid, some cotton balls, sugar, and water will do the trick. You have to keep moistening the cotton balls, but this works:

&t=286s

Don't take short cuts in preparation of the soution: if it says boil water, boil water.

Also, you have to keep doing this, so mix up a good supply and replenish the cotton balls every few days.

Even if you think you've licked the problem, keep at it. You will see them go away in about 2-3 days.

Amazon has it at twice the price of the local hardware store. Only pay about $3 for the big bottle.


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