Exterminating Home Care
30 Sep 2019
Preventative treatments lead to a new moisture control business
By Lesley Berkshire Bradley
For over 50 years, Art Parker has been caring for Moore County. He grew up here, worked for his Dad, and became a Councilman and Mayor of Aberdeen. And along the way he has purchased and restored old homes to help maintain the charm that is Aberdeen. And fittingly, his business, Aberdeen Exterminating, focuses on helping residents care for their homes.
Many area residents recognize the Aberdeen Exterminating trucks that circle the county daily, but they may not know that Parker is the owner of this company. His father started the company in 1960. When his father James passed away in 1975, Parker took over the business. It was a natural fit since Parker had worked for his dad as a teenager and he had spent his post-college years working in the agricultural chemical business.
“Aberdeen Exterminating has always been a family business,”explains Parker, “It was built as a grassroots business and my father learned by doing, with just him and a helper.”
Aberdeen Exterminating has grown and changed along with Moore County over the last half century. They run 22 trucks and technicians now, all focused on Moore County, serving thousands of customers. And, keeping it all in the family, Parker’s son Alan now works alongside his father.
For the past decade, Aberdeen Exterminating has been located in a quaint, wood-sided cottage on Poplar Street in Aberdeen.
“The building was in bad shape, but it was a good location and worth saving,” says Parker.
So, he and his wife Ann remodeled it from top to bottom and saved the building.
To accommodate the company’s growth, they recently purchased and are restoring the old Inn at the Bryant House Mansion, a failed Bed and Breakfast on Poplar and Main Streets. The revitalized home will serve as the new headquarters for Aberdeen Exterminating.
“I love Aberdeen,” injects Parker.
Obviously, the increase in the area population and housing has driven the growth in the exterminating business but perhaps even more so has been the change in how people interact with
“People are more concerned about pests,” Parker says, “They want a pest-free environment, and this has significantly impacted our business.”
The result has been a change to more preventative treatments versus responding to a problem. Preventative termite control is virtually a requirement in this area, and Aberdeen Exterminating offers annual termite control contracts to ensure that the threat is kept at bay.
Controlling crawling bugs such as ants is also a big business, as is mosquito abatement. Nearly half of Aberdeen Exterminating’s business focuses on the outside of the customers’ homes.
“People don’t want any interruptions for their bar-b-q’s,” Parker jokes and then adds, “and they are concerned about the diseases that mosquitoes have been known to carry, such as Zika, West Nile and Encephalitis.”
One common thread among these pests is moisture. Termites, ants, roaches and mosquitoes love moisture. And we all feel like that the rainfall in our area
“We have even launched a new business offering crawl-space moisture control,” explains Parker, “After the hurricane last year, homes that had never had water issues ended up with wet or damp crawl-spaces, so since we were already spending time in our customers’ crawlspaces it made sense to help them get rid of their moisture problems.”
Moisture in homes creates more problems than just an increase in bugs. High levels of moisture can cause mold, which can be a health issue. In
addition, excessive moisture deteriorates wooden structures and reduces the insulation effectiveness.
Aberdeen Exterminating utilizes instruments that gauge the level of humidity in the crawl spaces and in the wood. If the levels are too high, they provide dehumidifiers and even can seal a crawl space with heavy vinyl to protect it from further moisture problems.
“After we seal the crawl space, it looks clean, keeps moisture from permeating the area, which decreases condensation, reduces mold spores and reduces the moisture that bugs like so much,” explains Parker.
Parker lists three tips for homeowners to help reduce their pest problems:
• Ensure the home environment is as dry as possible
• Keep wood away from the house to deter termites
• Maintain basic housekeeping to limit attractions for ants and roaches
As Aberdeen Exterminating readies to move to its new home in the historic Bryant House, Parker will, no doubt, be following his own tips to manage pests. And what will continue to stand out is his love for this area and his company’s ongoing work to ensure that Moore County residents’ homes are pest-free.