Author Archives: Eugene Ortiz

Learning Digital Photography – Family Photography

Is it possible to photograph your family so the photos don’t look like snapshots? The answer is “absolutely”. There are several things you can do to make your pictures look more “professional”. And it’s not about using an expensive camera either. It’s more about what you do with what you have!

Now, have you ever posed for a family photograph when you were a kid and your parents seemed to take forever to actually take the photo? By the time they clicked the shutter, everyone looked bored and with different expressions on their faces (none of which were smiles). The simple trick is to get to it! If you put the camera up to your eye take the photo right away, or count to three so people know when to smile. It’s that simple. Shoot quickly and take more than one photo. If there are blinks you can then delete them later.

Oh! On the deleting subject… always delete photos that make people look terrible. Blinks, in-between expressions, uncomplimentary poses, should always be deleted. The biggest reason most people hate being photographed is because they’ve seen themselves too often captured at the wrong time or not ready for the photo.

Just because your camera comes with a built in flash, doesn’t mean you need to use it all of the time. The one overused element with digital cameras that will make your photos look like snapshots, is the flash! Your pictures will look so much better if you can use available light. Crank up your ISO (what used to be film speed) to take advantage of the available light, or move your kids into a brighter room or just take them outside.

The approach you take with your digital camera when photographing your family will either set the stage for an album of great photographs or just another box of mediocre snapshots. You can learn many more helpful techniques from this Helpful Site!

There are guaranteed ways to shoot great memories of your family. If you’re tired of seeing your photos look like snapshots, now is the time to learn how to get better results.

Fun Family Photography

Family photography need not be a hassle to anyone, and least of all to you, the photographer. All it needs is a bit of planning. The first thing to do is to find a location. There should be enough space to pose for everyone and natural light can be used. The choice of an outdoor venue will be ideal as long as the weather holds up. The background for the photograph should be simple, uncluttered and complimentary to the pictures that you hope to take.

Lighting the family photographs
Family photographs are no different from others where lighting is concerned. Just ensure that they are not squinting with too much light or are covered in shadows. Family photographs are for recording purposes and as such needs to be very clear. Taking the photographs in natural light is best. Early morning or at sunset seems to give the best results and if it is indoors light from a window can illuminate the picture.

Have a relaxed atmosphere
Get the family to relax and then start taking the photographs. You can ask al the family members to make the funniest faces possible and then keep on taking after they have stopped. This way you will get natural smiles and a relaxed group of people.

Posing can be traditional in some of the shots while in others you can ask them to be just comfortable and not think of stuffy poses. Make it fun. Encourage interaction among family members. They can put their arms around each other or children can be seated on another’s lap. This way it is easier to get natural looking photographs which are definitely more interesting than the strictly posed ones.

As the family photographer you should know how to make the shot interesting. This can be done with seating them at different levels for a more dynamic look.

Photo angles
The photographs can be taken from different angles like a step ladder where you are looking down on the group and as they look up you will get a good photograph with good facial features. Other angles can be tried along with the traditional eye level.

Fill the frame
The best family photographs should not have any outside distractions in them. An easy way to ensure this is to have the frame filled with the family. This will center the focus on the faces of the family members

Individual portraits
Take fun portraits of each individual member of the family. This way you will be able to make a digital collage and with a bit of creativity will end up with an exceptional photograph. Individual portraits can be posed with a favorite toy or a pet or near a car. This way it will be like a story about each person’s character and can be really exciting to look at.

So, you can see that there are endless possibilities for making lovely memories by taking family photographs. If you need any of these pictures to stand the test of time convert them into black and white images.

Residential Electricians

Residential electricians are trained professionals dealing with any type of electrical work that a home has. The broad nature of the amount of electrical work inside a modern home is also why mostly all electricians are licensed and were properly trained at the trade. The work typically goes in phases, and starts with the simple rough wiring of the entire house, and will eventually end as a finished product with lights, outlets, and everything else you see that is powered.

Running wire in your home is possibly the most important aspect of residential work done by an electrician. This is what feeds power to everything, and is typically forgotten because the wiring sits behind your walls. To power these wires, you typically will have a main electric line that goes into your house with a meter in which your local power company controls. After a house is completely wired, residential electricians typically will then wait for the home to be almost finished on the interior so that they can install receptacles, switches, and other fixtures.

Electricians also take care of running power to the appliances in your home. Other specialty items included are hot tubs, security systems, alarm systems, gates, exterior lighting, and other custom touches many modern homes today have. Electricians are always evolving their trade because they need to keep up with the modern trends of electrical work. Many new things are being released into the market every day and it is their job to have the knowledge to install it and make it work.

Because electrical work can be complicated, and has a lot of safety precautions, this is typically why you should only use a professional company with licensed electricians. It is not worth the risk of using an inexperience individual to do electrical work for you because electrical failure can cause fires, and can leave your home unlivable. If your power goes out, that means that you no longer have all of the modern conveniences of today. Simply put, leave electrical work to true residential electricians.

If you are in need of any type of upgrade or repair work, this is another reason not to hesitate to call a professional. Many companies offer a specific 24/7 service for emergency electrical repairs so that a home is not left in a unsafe condition or situation. Even if you don’t need emergency repair work, it is still important to schedule the work to be done as soon as possible so further complications will not rise later down the road.

For information on Coastlight Electrical Services click here.

The Best Garage Door Repairs

The garage is one place that most people will take for granted. However, it also needs to be taken good care of. Stylish garage doors can add great value to a home and also make life easier. This is considering that you have the freedom to choose among the huge variety of door openers. With some of the openers in place, you won’t have to get out of your car to manually open the door. They offer loads of convenience, making life easier for many. If you have a great garage door in place, you might need repair services to keep it in top shape.

The repair services

Most of repair service providers will tackle any kind of repair that your garage door requires. Besides the repairs, professional providers will also take care of any rollers and springs that need replacing in the process. This is because the springs and the rollers can get old and ineffective or break over time. With the repairs, you will get your garage door functioning as good as new. Other services that you stand to enjoy with the door repairs include:

  • Repair of squeaky doors
  • Repair of broken doors
  • Repair of garage door openers
  • Repair and replacement of the springs, cables and rollers

How to choose a good repair company

When doing garage door repairs, it is important to seek the services of professionals. This will be a simple way of ensuring that you get great value from the repairs that you get. It can be frustrating to have shoddy repairs done only for the door to go back into bad shape within a very short period of time. Luckily, there are very good companies that have the expertise to offer you the kind of value that you deserve with your door. When choosing a repair company:

Consider the experience: years of experience in door repairs will make it easy for the company to handle whatever problem you are facing. You will also be sure that the staff understands what they are doing with the door.

Consider the hardware: this is considering that some of the companies will offer you even the hardware that is needed for the repairs or replacements. A company that offers you warranty on the hardware is confident in the quality of what it is offering you.

Consider the services: a good garage door repair company will cover most of the problems that arise with the doors. To be on the safe side, however, always look at the list of services that your company of choice has for you. You also want to settle for a company that offers emergency services to cater to your needs as soon as they arise.

Consider the prices: the prices of the services that you get can be determined by the problem at hand and the hardware that is needed to take care of it. Most repair companies will have reasonable service rates. It is reasonable to pay an amount that matches with the quality of the services that you get with your garage door repairs.

Inflatable Water Slides For Backyard – Popular Inflatable Water Slides

When the anticipated summer break come, we have to find something that kids can have fun with. One of the best products ever developed are inflatable waters slides for backyard. So let me give you a few popular inflatable water slides, and the reason why you should get some.

Large inflatable water slides for your backyard are really popular choice these days but there are some things you need to consider before purchasing these items. One of the first is the size of the product. Can it fit in your backyard? Also in your close neighborhood, make sure the other neighbors don’t have the problem with it. Most water slides can easily fit in any background which means that you, as a parent, can easily take care of kids and even let them invite friends over to play without worrying too much about it.

The simpler they are the lower price of them is. Certainly there are those really expensive ones that go way over $500 but those are mainly intended for the commercial use. The lower price products you can find are Banzai Inflatable Water Slides. Banzai Speed Splitter racing inflatable water slide is one of the very expensive one’s. But these are very large as well and range close to $500. The second very well liked Banzai Product is the Banzai Double Drop Fall and that one is prices below $400. Sometimes you can find it as low as $240.

Banzai 18′ Long Inflatable water slide 8′ tall often price under $200.

Most inflatable water slides are made for children 3 ages and up. Be very careful to make sure you check the age before you make your purchase as some are made for children ranging in age from 5 & 6 and up.

Another very popular product is the combination of bounce house and water slides. For very small size you can get them as low as $60, but they can range, most combination bounce house and inflatable water slides are intended for children 3 and up. Smaller children just love these kinds of bouncy and slippery slides, and they are able to spent hours playing and jumping without getting bored or getting in trouble.

With most inflatable water slides and inflatable bounce houses the blower is included which is a must have for this kind of items. Just make sure that you check the age carefully before making your purchase. The best of all, if you surprise them, this is going to be the best surprise ever.

For information on bounce house rentals click here.

The History and Movement of Dungeons and Dragons

Dungeons and Dragons. These three words bring many thoughts to many different people. People think about nerds, geeks, dorks. Others think of fun, adventurous, stimulating. Some people think of live action role playing (LARPing). The bottom line is that Dungeons and Dragons has been around for quite some time, and has entertained millions of people around the world due to its open world, open imagination based game. Dungeons and Dragons has expanded into a multi-billion dollar idea that has spawned many copies of the D20 system.

Dungeons and Dragons (D&D) was first published in 1974. The game quickly grew in popularity and the demand for the basic book sky-rocketed. D&D is a D20 system. D20 systems are role-playing games where each player has a character sheet with statistics, equipment, spells, race, age, class, and other abilities. Players play on either a mat or some other form of board with which the Dungeon Master (DM) molds his story for the players enjoyment. It is called a D20 system because most actions require the player to roll a 20 sided die. D stands for die, 20 the number of sides on the die. In D&D the D20 is used to attack, make saving throws to avoid spell damage, or to use an ability such as stealth or intimidation. Damage rolls on successful attack rolls usually use D6, D8, D10, or D12s. The main focus players have in their characters are the abilities and attacks they can perform. Abilities and attacks depend greatly upon the class of the character.

Dungeons and Dragons has a plethora of classes for players to choose from. They can choose from a basic fighter, barbarian, sorcerer, wizard, bard, cleric, monk, paladin, to even a druid. There are well over 40 different classes for players to choose from and even more prestige (expansion) classes. Each class has different abilities and play a different role in the party. Players can choose from being a melee damage (rogue), ranged damage (archer, wizard), support character (bard), healer (cleric), or a tank type of character (barbarian). Dungeons and Dragons was set up to be a team game that required every player to take his role seriously. Like the common phrase says, “You only as strong as your weakest link”. If a groups healer is fooling around in combat, the entire team can suffer. The use of roles ensures everyone has an equal playing field in terms of their importance to the party.

Perhaps the greatest part of D&D is the length games can go on for. One game of D&D consists of sessions. Each session can last anywhere from one hour to an entire day depending on how dedicated and free the players and DM are. Games consist of these sessions and certain games can last several years, even up to 10+ years of gaming. I’ve personally played in games that have been going on for 3 years now and have grown attached to my character. Dungeons and Dragons is perhaps the only game that people become attached to their characters on a normal basis. Although it may take several gaming sessions, many people begin to envelope themselves in their character and each decision they make.

Many people believe D&D sessions are always a Dungeon adventure that ends with killing dragons or saving the princess. However, luckily for most gamers, the man behind D&D, Gary Gygax, added alignments to each characters. You character may be lawful, neutral, or chaotic. Several DMs make their adventures chaotic only, which leads to many characters doing whatever they want, when they want. Several of my sessions have been focused on internal issues with our party instead of external issues such as what has red eyes and is looking at us while we set up camp at night.

In my experience, the easiest characters to begin playing Dungeons and Dragons are fighters. Fighters must know their Armor Class (AC), Health Points (HP), and what attacks they can perform. Fighters have the least amount of material that needs to be memorized in order to play effectively. Although they are a simple class to play, they can play a great role in any party. Upon learning the basics of the game, experiences players may explore into the Arcane or Diving classes such as the cleric, druid, or wizard. These classes must know the same information as fighters, but must also pay attention to their spells. A good wizard knows what spells to use and when. Casting classes are limited in their spell casting capabilities and if they run out of spells, they must resort to hand to hand combat. A Wizard fighting in hand to hand combat is much like a quarterback attempting to tackle a linebacker in football.

Dungeons and Dragons is a game meant to be played by anyone. The game is only limited by your imagination. I’ve played D&D with a wide range of characters. From 16 year old punks to 65 year old grandfathers and everything in-between. It takes an open mind to try Dice Dungeon and Dragons out for the first time, but it doesn’t take a nerd or geek to enjoy playing it. I consider Dungeons and Dragons to be the equivalent of a video game, except it was first created when video games were barely even known about. Today, everyone knows what video games are and the majority of citizens enjoy playing them. If people were to try D&D just once, I’m sure they would an enjoyable experience. Dungeons and Dragons games can be found in many places. You’re able to find groups that play online or you can even walk into a comic shop and ask if they host games. D&D is more popular than most people expect. Through the use of imagination and the collective thoughts of many willing participants, Dungeons and Dragons has grown from a home-made basement gathering to a world-wide game enjoyed by millions.

The Consultant Singularity

We all understand that consultants come in every shape, size and flavor. Consultants, to be effective, take the “lessons learned” from decades of experience and couple those experiences with strong investigative skills and tools to define a path forward that will result in the outcome that the client is anticipating. We consult on business processes, management approach, specialized applications and we even apply our ability to uncover need such that it results in consultative selling. Regardless of the client’s mission, the desired outcome, or the impetus for the consultation, there is one overriding truth (a singularity) that must always be maintained. Consultants, to be true to their calling, must always be the client’s advocate.

For information on TMForum click here.

I define an advocate as someone who supports and defends a particular group or cause. To be a client advocate, the consultant must be willing to forego any personal bias or preconceived notions to become a proponent and promoter of the client’s intellectual capital (and by intellectual capital we mean “everything that goes out the door at the end of the day”). Some synonyms for a good consultant might be Champion, Supporter, Campaigner or Crusader. To be effective, the consultant must be able to assume the role of a dedicated defender against anything that detracts from the client’s mission.

Client advocacy may seem contrary to those in a consultative selling role but without this singularity the consultant can never achieve the credibility that is crucial to a successful consultancy. Even in consultative selling, acting in the client’s best interest has to be the foundation of every action. Each consultant in a selling role must ask themselves “Are you first a consultant, or a salesman? ” If your answer is Salesman, this article isn’t for you. But, if you are promoting an effective solution, and if you truly believe in that solution, resolving the need for promoting the sale and the paramount need for acting in the client’s best interest can be complimentary. Just be aware that there will be times when your solution may not be in the client’s best interest, and in those cases you must suggest that the client take an alternative path. The credibility you gain by staying true to the role of an advocate may be of more value than that single sale.

Client Advocacy may seem easier for those consultants who are engaged purely to improve the client’s operation or processes. But it does have its pitfalls. Rarely is the consultant an expert in the client’s business. Each client has their own differentiators (that’s why they can compete), and their own corporate culture. To be a functioning advocate, these are the elements of the client’s business that the consultant must learn quickly or suffer the consequences. We’ve all heard the jokes about consulting… I especially like this one. A consultant is one who knows more and more about less and less, until he knows absolutely everything about nothing. This outcome is the result of a consultant attempting a solution based solely on data and documentation. To be an advocate, the consultant must assume an integrated role in the client’s culture and buy into their corporate vision. This can be accomplished in short order if the consultant understands the definition of SONDER.

The Urban Dictionary defines the word Sonder as a noun. It describes the realization that each random passerby is living a life as vivid and complex as your own. What that means to the consultant, is that there is no such thing as IBM, or Ford Motor Company, or any other firm you care to mention. Those company names are really just terms to address the collective Sonder of each person employed in the mutual success of that company. The client is not a company, but rather a collection of individuals working toward a common goal; we call them stakeholders. The effective consultant understands this and insists on interviewing the stakeholders.

The goal for these interviews is to gain insight into the drivers for each stakeholder to refine the consultants understanding of the VISION and the role for each stakeholder, and to use that information when investigating the processes and procedures currently employed to achieve their objectives. The result is a strong picture of the AS IS situation and will establish the starting point for the consultants work to craft a path to the SHOULD BE position. Keeping the stakeholders Sonder in mind ensures that the consultation is based on true advocacy and that the outcome is in alignment with not only good management theory, but aligned with the individual needs of those who must implement your solution (and, consequently, rate your performance).

If I have been “preaching to the choir”, I apologize. But consultants, like every other professional, need to be reminded form time to time that there are fundamental truths that must be held above all others. That while consultants are trained and skilled in all the mechanics that result in improved efficiency and method, their most valuable contribution is when they tailor those practices such that the engagement is one of true client advocacy. This is the Consultant Singularity.

Ten Reasons to Hire Professional Pool Service

Of course, hiring someone to do a job is always somewhat more expensive than doing it yourself, but in this case, the difference is often smaller than most imagine. The only way to really know if hiring a pool service is worth the cost in your particular situation is to get estimates. And consider the ten reasons to hire a professional pool service in Irvine (Irvine was incorporated in 1971. The city of Irvine has enjoyed consistent recognition as an economic, environmental and educational leader among cities across the nation.):

1. Professional swimming pool services will guarantee the work and swimming pool to function correctly.

2. Pool maintenance, while it appears simple, when you get involved either daily or burn through your time on the weekends devoted to cleaning your pool.

3. There is never enough time during the day to deal with daily life much less your pool.

4. The experience and training that your pool service has is vastly different from a one pool owner in the back yard. On average most pool guys visit over 60 swimming pools in one week and each one individually
unique.

5. Some retailers that sell pool supplies and chemicals may offer free services to get you to buy their own overpriced products that administer to your pool at their mercy. However not every situation is fixed from the desktop of a pool supply store. The staff is trained to give answers to particular problems and most have very little to no experience in pool service save for the maintenance they performed on the own family pool.

6. Water balance-clear water is not always balanced water. The clearest water is actually way out of water balance and is not inviting to any swimmer, their skin will itch, possibly welt up into have and bathing suits ruined. I know what most pool owners want it, is to see the bottom of the pool and no green algae.

7. Equipment- with out of balance water becomes costly repairs to equipment of filters, heaters, pumps, salt cells, and plaster.

8. For an extra fee, some pool maintenance companies will also close your pool at the end of the season for those who live cold climates and when the warmer weather returns will open the pool. Closing a pool requires is to add anti-freeze to the pipes, and then cover the pool. Opening the pool reverses the process, plus checking the circulation and filtration systems for the pool.

9. The pool service in Irvine come out on weekly bases and will come more frequently if it becomes necessary.

10. The maintenance crew will be professionals that will scrub your pool walls and steps, clean the filter and empty skimmer baskets and ensure that equipment is working properly.

There are many reasons to have a professional pool service in Southlake Texas take care of the hard work it takes to keep up the maintenance of your pool, but the best reason of all is so that you can sit back and lounge at your pool and enjoy watching your family and friends have a great summer.

The Best Fat Burners For Natural Weight Loss

Anyone who has ever tried to lose weight knows that any fat burning advantage can be well worth the effort or price. For this reason picking the best fat burners to meet your weight loss goals can be vitally important. Understanding the fat loss principle behind these supplements can help you decide if fat burners are right for you.

The primary function of a fat burner is to increase your metabolism which helps the body break down fat stores as an energy source. It also needs to be able to keep your body’s metabolism raised in order to burn of excess calories before they are moved to fat storage. You should also be working on raising your metabolism through diet and exercise as well, using a fat burner supplement to speed up your weight loss results.

Most people turn to natural fat burners when they decide to use one to help meet their weight loss goals. While you can in some instances get a prescription fat burner through your doctor the side effects they cause make the natural way a better choice. There are many of these types of supplement to choose from including green tea, thermogenic fat burners, lipotropics, and combination fat burner and appetite suppressants that normally include hoodia. You can find the best natural fat burners at health food stores and on the internet from websites that specialize in these types of weight loss supplements.

Probably the most convenient of the fat burners to use is green tea. It comes in pill form, as a powder that can be mixed into shakes and smoothies, or the just brew it up and drink as a tea. It contains polyphenols which increase metabolism and burns away excess body fat. It is also rich in antioxidants which helps the body flush toxins and strengthen the immune system.

Lipotropic fat burners work by helping to clear fat from internal organs, particularly the liver. This helps return these organs to more normal function which helps your body run more efficiently which includes reducing excess fat storage and lowering cholesterol. Thermogenics, on the other hand, work by increasing your metabolism and raising body temperature which requires fuel. This fuel is normally fat deposits.

The best fat burners for each individual situation are dependent upon individual weight loss goals and the way you wish to achieve your desired results.

Do I Really Need to Call a Pest Control Company If I Get Bed Bugs?

If you get bedbugs, you don’t have to call a licensed pest control company, but you’d be foolish not to, is the take-away message from a warning issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last August. “Using the wrong pesticide or using it incorrectly to treat for bedbugs can make you, your family, and your pets sick,” the EPA said in a consumer alert quoted by The Hill Healthwatch online. “It can also make your home unsafe to live in – and may not solve the bedbug problem.”

Alarmed by reports of dangerous pesticide misuse and extreme measures being taken by some homeowners and apartment dwellers in do-it-yourself efforts to eradicate bed bugs, the U.S. EPA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a joint statement last July warning consumers against using outdoor pesticide products inside their homes in attempts to get rid of bed bugs. Reports from licensed pest control professionals in the field and news media of people dousing their beds, their pajamas and even bathing their children in garden insecticides has caused growing concern among government officials, the medical community, public health guardians, and the National Pest Management Association (NPMA). The use of harsh chemicals not approved by the EPA for residential use can cause severe burn-like irritation of the skin and eyes, possible damage to the central nervous system, and may even expose you to carcinogens.

There have also been numerous news reports of house and apartment fires begun by desperate people using highly flammable liquids to kill bedbugs. In January, a Cincinnati, Ohio man who was wiping down his furniture with a mixture of insecticide and alcohol started a fire in his apartment when his cigarette ignited fumes from the chemical mixture. In July 2008, an Eatontown, New Jersey man blew up his apartment while attempting do-it-yourself pest control. A pilot light ignited the chemical spray and fumes causing an explosion that blew out the front windows of the apartment and resulted in a fire that destroyed the man’s apartment and caused serious damage to neighboring units.

Pest control firms reported seeing many ineffective and potentially dangerous measures used by do-it-yourselfers, including ammonia, bleach, fire, smoke, kerosene, wasp spray, and bug bombs, as well as concentrated pesticides bought on the internet,” University of Kentucky entomologist and national bedbug expert Michael Potter, writes in Bugs Without Borders, Defining the Global Bed Bug Resurgence, an international survey of pest management companies recently conducted by the University of Kentucky in conjunction with the NPMA. “As bedbug victims become more desperate, serious injury may result from such applications, especially among those who choose not to hire a professional,” he warns.

Bedbugs do not always respond to home treatment. These apple seed-sized insects that feed on human blood are hard to kill, a function of their biology and behavior. At best, do-it-yourself home treatments may force bedbugs to relocate, spreading infestations more quickly. These insects have a tough, protective carapace that is not easily penetrated. To kill, pest control products must come into direct physical contact with the insect; and their eggs are unaffected by products currently approved by the EPA for residential use. When not feeding, bedbugs hide in inaccessible spaces deep inside minute crevices, inside walls, behind baseboards, under floorboards, and inside electronic devices. Bedbugs and their eggs are also easily transported on clothing and belongings, allowing infestations to quickly spread through a home or apartment building. This combination of biology and behavior makes it nearly impossible to kill an entire bedbug infestation with a single pest control treatment. Three professional pest control treatments spaced two weeks apart are typically required to successfully exterminate a bedbug infestation and ensure that all hidden bugs and newly-hatched eggs have been killed.

Professional extermination by a licensed pest control company with an expertise in bed bug elimination is the most effective way to exterminate bed bugs. The EPA, on the Bed Bug Information Page posted on its website, states, “Getting a pest management professional (PMP) involved as soon as possible rather than taking time to try to treat the problem yourself is very effective at preventing further infestations.”

Fast action is essential in battling bed bug infestations. Bed bugs reproduce at an alarming rate and infestations can grow quickly. During its 6- to 12-month lifespan, a female bed bug can lay 500 eggs with offspring capable of reproducing within a month. It is common to see three or more bed bug generations present in an established infestation. Prompt treatment in the earliest stages of infestation can limit the infestation and prevents it from spreading.

To successfully treat bedbug infestations, licensed pest control professionals employ a combination of environmental management procedures, called Integrated Pest Management (IPM), and a variety of pest control materials approved by the EPA for residential use only by licensed pest management professionals. Effective bedbug extermination begins with meticulous pre-treatment preparation to remove clutter, clothing, bed linens and other items that might allow bedbugs to escape exposure to pest control materials. When site preparation is complete, a combination of pest control materials is employed to attack bedbugs on multiple levels.

Concerns about health and safety issues that have arisen from misuse of pest control chemicals by unlicensed or improperly trained pest controllers and unqualified contractors trying to cash in on public fear prompted the EPA to warn consumers to avoid insect extermination services made with “unrealistic promises of effectiveness or low cost.”

Last July, a Newark, New Jersey pest control company was accused of illegal application of chemicals not approved for residential use. While providing bed bug treatments to 70 homes and apartments units, technicians sprayed powerful chemicals on mattresses and children’s toys. In Cincinnati, Ohio last June, an unlicensed contractor hired to exterminate bed bugs saturated an apartment complex with an agricultural pesticide, sending seven tenants to the hospital and causing public health authorities to quarantine the property.

In the hopes of preventing such incidents, the NPMA recently developed Best Management Practices for Bed Bugs (BMP) to serve as a guide for both the industry and consumers. A list of consumer tips for selecting a pest professional provided in the BMP recommends that consumers hire only qualified and licensed pest management firms to protect their health and safety and ensure that the pest control services they receive are safe and effective. The NPMA further recommends that consumers give preferential consideration to licensed pest management firms that have attained QualityPro certification, indicating that they exhibit the highest technical, educational and ethical standards in the industry.