The national average cost to exterminate ants is $131. Common household ant species include carpenter ants, fire ants, crazy ants, rover ants and odorous house ants.
An ant infestation is a major nuisance, so you’re most likely looking to get rid of them ASAP. By hiring a professional ant exterminator, once the ants are gone — they’re gone for good.
What’s in this cost guide?
How much does ant extermination cost?
The cost to get rid of ants might be determined by your home's square footage (and other factors), or you might be charged a flat rate.
Ant extermination cost per square foot
Some pest professionals charge by the square foot to treat ant problems. The larger the house or commercial property, the more chemicals and employee labor required and the higher the cost to treat.
For example, here is the pricing breakdown from Falkin Pest Control in Carrollton, Texas:
One-time treatment price
Quarterly treatment price
|Up to 2,000 sq. ft.||$159||$99|
|2,000 – 3,500 sq. ft.||$179||$109|
|3,500 – 5,000 sq. ft.||$199||$119|
Treatment includes foundation barrier spray (8-foot continuous barrier around property perimeter), eave and overhang treatment, extended barrier yard treatment (application of a water-activated granule that combats subterranean ants), exterior void application, interior baseboard application and interior voids (such as plumbing voids under the sink).
Ant extermination flat rates
Some pest control services charge a flat rate, which generally covers a set quantity of services on a one-time basis. Some companies offer a warranty or guarantee to follow up with a re-treatment if the ants return within a certain period of time.
Here are some examples of flat rate costs for ant extermination:
- Interior and exterior pest control maintenance: $75 per visit from Kuma Pest Control in Lawrenceville, Georgia
- General pest control: $95 for 45 minutes from Pest Solutions in Wappingers Falls, New York
- One-time ant treatment: $135 (excludes carpenter ants) from B & D Pest Solutions
- New York carpenter ant elimination package with a one-year guarantee: $225 from B & D Pest Solutions
What affects the cost of an ant exterminator?
Ant treatment costs are affected by the size of the space to be treated, the need to exterminate ants one time or on an ongoing basis, the type of ants to be exterminated and the severity of the infestation.
Getting rid of ants for good goes beyond cleaning up sticky spills and crumbs. DIY bait traps are no match for the unseen ant colonies that could be living in walls or around the exterior of a home. So, more severe ant infestations require a multipronged approach. Several factors affect the cost of exterminating ants in a home, office or commercial space.
How to hire an ant exterminator
There are a few steps you can take to aid in your decision-making and ensure that you hire an ant exterminator who is right for the job:
- Determine your budget: Figure out how much you have to spend on professional extermination services. Knowing your budget will help determine which extermination company is right for you.
- Check out multiple companies: Not all ant exterminators are created equally. Be sure to call around to a few different exterminators and ask neighbors, friends and family members for recommendations.
- Ask for an inspection: Some exterminators may charge for an initial inspection, but for that fee, they should provide you with a written diagnosis of the problem or an identification of the pest. They should show you where the pest is causing the problem and discuss how they plan to control it.
For more tips on smart hiring, see Thumbtack's safety page.
How to save money on ant extermination
Hiring a professional ant extermination service doesn’t have to break the bank. Here are some ways to save money on ant extermination service costs:
Prevention is key
Prevention is key to avoiding or minimizing ant problems — and saving money on treatment. Here are some tips to avoid an ant problem in the future:
- Ants look for food and shelter in the kitchen, so keep it extra clean. They typically enter through tiny crevices and cracks and hide under the kitchen sink, in cupboards and other dark places.
- Don’t leave dirty dishes in the sink, because they are pure ant bait. Even if you don’t wash them right away, rinse them and keep them immersed in soapy water.
- Mop up food spills with soapy water right away and keep your kitchen floor crumb-free.
- Take out the garbage frequently. Keep kitchen containers sealed tightly and all jars and cans covered and put away.
Use natural deterrents
Common household items, such as lemons, talcum powder, and bay leaves, are excellent ant deterrents. Place bay leaves or talcum powder at suspected entry points, and squirt lemon juice on door thresholds and windowsills.
Benefits of professional ant extermination
Bad ant infestations generally require professional help. DIY bait ant traps are ineffective against the unseen ant colonies that could be living in walls or around the exterior of a home. An ant colony can have millions of ants, so eliminating those visible in the house is just the tip of the iceberg.
Professional ant exterminators will eliminate visible ants, then track down active ant nests and eliminate those as well. The exterminators then scrub identified entry points with special detergent to eliminate the ant pheromones and apply a residual insecticide to prevent future ant visitors or new colonies. Different types of ants respond to different treatments, so it’s important to have a pro who knows their stuff about ants.
In short, there are many benefits to hiring a professional ant control expert. From specialized equipment to safe and non-toxic chemical options, trained professional exterminators are knowledgeable about heavy infestations and are equipped with a variety of treatments to get the job done effectively.
The internet may house a lot of DIY pest solutions — but to get to the real root of the problem, you should hire a professional exterminator.