New study finds industry revenue up in 2021


April 5, 2022


The U.S. structural pest control industry generated service revenue of about $10.4 million this past year, an 8.2 percent increase from the about $9.6 million measured in 2020.

The increase was reported in the latest edition of “A Strategic Analysis of the U.S. Structural Pest Control Industry” from Specialty Consultants.

“Industry growth might have been even more robust were it not for the tight labor pool,” Rich Kalik, a partner in Specialty Consultants, said in a news release. “Nearly 40 percent of the owners or managers surveyed said the inability to hire and retain a sufficient service technician staff inhibited their company’s growth this past year.”

About one-quarter of respondents said the leading challenge to their business was finding and keep good employees. Despite continued consolidation, there were more than 18,100 pest control firms operating in the U.S. last year.

The total organic revenue growth for the professional pest control industry outpaced the 2021 U.S. GDP figure of 5.7 percent by nearly 44 percent.

Despite the staffing challenges, residential service revenue grew by high single digits this past year. Respondents reported 7.85 million residential accounts under contract with a nationwide average of 5.8 service calls per account.

Nationwide, half of the respondents reported servicing their residential accounts on a quarterly basis. Recurring revenue accounted of 86.5 percent of the residential pest control service revenue generated this past year, up from 84.7 percent measured in 2020. There were an additional 4.3 million one-time residential service treatments.

“Professional pest service revenue grew for all of the leading pests, except mosquitoes, where revenue earned from that service declined 6.8 percent this past year,” Kalik said. “The total service revenue generated from controlling ants surpassed the revenue earned from controlling rodents, bed bugs, fleas, and ticks combined.”

The commercial sector rebounded modestly after declining 4.4 percent in 2020, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the commercial segment, 95.5 percent of the revenue generated was from services provided to accounts under an annual contract. Low interest rates contributed to a strong housing market and a healthy increase in the number of pre- and post-construction termite jobs completed this past year.

The 2021 season market report is the 22nd edition edition of “A Strategic Analysis of the U.S. Structural Pest Control Industry.” A total of 800 owners or managers of pest control companies were surveyed for this study. The syndicated market report is available for purchase only by subscription, sold in its entirety.


About the Author

Ellen Wagner is a former digital editor for PMP magazine.

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