Vermin X offers pest control solutions for: residential, commercial and cottage customers in the Peterborough area. Specializing in difficult interior wasp and bee removal without the use of chemicals. Exterminations services are all delivered using an IPM (Integrated Pest Management) system to integrate safe and effective solutions for your most difficult pest challenges.
1. What was the Starter Company Plus experience like for you?
The Starter Company Plus experience was good for keeping me focused and on task. Otherwise, I would not have completed a viable business plan. Now, I have the capacity to approach lenders for a loan when I need it. The cohort was supportive as well and I believe that since we are all working in a new covid environment, business is not as normal. We shared our stresses and felt supported moving forward. Employment in Peterborough has always been a challenge and starting a new business was the only real option left for me.
2. Where did the idea for Vermin X come from?
The idea for starting Vermin X was as a result of a good friend and neighbour asking me for assistance with a rodent problem. I still had some bail boxes at my house from when I had rats. I told her it was no problem and I would be there to help. I went to the hardware store to purchase some bait box fill and was told by the clerk that I required either a farmer’s certification or an exterminator’s license. I left the store empty-handed but my determination to assist my friend was strong. I registered for the exterminator’s exam later that week, studied like crazy and 3 weeks later wrote the 2.5 hour exam. A week and a half later I received the news that I had passed the exam.
3. What are your hopes for the business in the next 3 years?
I hope to have a few employees in the next few years to help support the work.
4. Has it been difficult launching a new business during the pandemic?
Launching a business is difficult at any time. COVID has certainly provided additional challenges but, I plan on growing the business slowly. The virus will temper the possibility of growing too fast. As a bonus for the community, COVID has dramatically reduced the spread of bedbugs. So, that is a win for everyone. With most people becoming focused on looking outside their windows, the birds are getting fed more food; the result of the extra food availability is an increase of birds in North America. Birds and squirrels are starting to become an issue for some households because of nesting in attics and in window ledges. I have experienced an increased demand for one-way traps as a result.
5. What has the response in the community been since you launched?
Most of the people I speak with, in regards to the business, are surprised. They usually ask, “WHY?” In general however, most people are supportive.
6. What is your favourite thing about living and working in Peterborough & the Kawarthas?
I absolutely love Peterborough! I love the amount of nature that surrounds us. It is one of the reasons my business is based on an Integrated Pest Management system. I conduct a full assessment of the property prior to offering service suggestions. Chemical free is always the first option.
Working in this capacity has provided me with the opportunity to support my community in a way that is truly in demand.
Photos courtesy of Logan Stabler.
This article is a series highlighting the graduating businesses from the Business Advisory Centre’s Starter Company Plus program. This program has been a key stepping-stone for businesses and entrepreneurs looking to grow in the region and since 2017 has resulted in the creation of 74 startups and supported 47 business expansions. The program has also seen the opening of 22 brick-and-mortar locations in the region, and has created 141 jobs in the local community.