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Pest control technicians identify and get rid of pests like rats, mice and cockroaches.

Salary, a pound sign Salary: £17,000 to £30,000 average per year
Hours, a clock face Hours: 35 to 40 per week

1. Entry requirements

There are no formal entry requirements, but maths and English skills could help you get a job.

You may be able to get into this job through a pest control technician intermediate apprenticeship.

You'll usually need a driving licence to drive a van with your equipment and chemicals. You'll also need a background check by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

Experience in the building trade or handling chemicals may be useful.

To find out what the job's like, take the British Pest Control Association's short course.

2. Skills required

You'll need:

  • customer service skills
  • confidence with maths for calculating doses of chemicals
  • practical skills to investigate problems
  • knowledge of health and safety
  • knowledge of how chemicals affect the environment

3. What you'll do

You'll use chemicals and equipment to deal with insects and animals like rats, mice, foxes, moles and birds. You could work anywhere from people’s homes to restaurants, sewers, warehouses or farms.

Your day-to-day duties may include:

  • investigating and identifying pests
  • collecting dead animals and samples for analysis
  • finding out how pests are getting in
  • choosing a method of control
  • spraying chemicals to get rid of insects
  • laying poison and traps or using air guns to control birds and animals
  • repairing an area to stop pests returning
  • advising people how to prevent further problems
  • completing reports and keeping records
  • handling and storing chemicals
  • getting rid of dead or captured animals

With experience you could specialise in one type of pest.

4. Salary

Starter: £17,000 to £20,000

Experienced: £22,000 to £25,000

Highly Experienced: £30,000 or more (manager)

You may get commission, bonuses or a petrol allowance.

These figures are a guide.

5. Working hours, patterns and environment

You'll usually work Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm. You'll often work alone, driving to jobs in a van.

You could work indoors or outside. You may need to crawl into confined spaces or climb ladders. You may also need to wear protective clothing.

You'll need physical fitness and good eyesight to investigate problems. You may come across unpleasant sights and smells.

This work may not be suitable if you've allergies or certain skin conditions.

6. Career path and progression

With experience you could be promoted to supervisor or manager.

You could also start your own business.

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Last updated: 12 September 2018