Do-it-yourself projects and home improvement can be a satisfying way to spend your time. They’re also a great way to save money and build independence in maintaining your home. However, when it comes to meth contamination, DIY usually turns into more of an SOS. That’s why we generally suggest hiring a Certified Decontamination Specialist.
Of course, we say ‘generally’ because each situation is different. When it comes to meth removal, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. To fully explain that, we’d need to walk you through each step of the meth removal process. Naturally, that’s too much to go over in one post. For more information, you can check out our articles on the steps of decontamination or the associated costs.
Today, we’ll focus on the basics of what to look for when hiring a decontamination company. To start that discussion, we’re going to tell you about Mark Smith. (You may remember him from our blog on meth and stigma).
Finding the Right Company for the Job
Mark had a rocky start to decontamination. He and his family had moved to Utah just before Christmas, only to discover their house contained unsafe levels of meth. As if that wasn’t enough to deal with, another company told him that the only way to remove meth is to strip the house down to the wood. Their quote was about $60,000, not including remodeling, (a definite red flag).
Luckily, he remembered that his home inspector had suggested a meth test before closing, and called for a second opinion. (The Smiths had forgone testing in the hopes of moving in before the holidays. That’s a shame since it could have saved them a lot of trouble).
The inspector agreed that the quote was far too high and gave him our number. Understandably, Mark didn’t exactly trust the idea of a decontamination company after receiving his initial quote, deciding to take on the project himself. To clarify, that meant his wife and kids had to stay with their out-of-state relatives for several months. And that he would (on his own) attempt to scrub and treat every inch of his house.
Eventually, Mark ended up calling us after all – but entirely by accident. He’d done his homework and wanted to buy the meth remover we use. We directed him to the resources he needed and made sure he knew how to mix and store the detergent.
After this conversation, he got curious and asked for a quote. We told him it would be between four and five thousand dollars for a home of that size, and a heck of a lot less time than he’d already put into it. He liked the sound of that. At that point, he hadn’t seen his wife or kids in a month and was well on his way to overspending.
We finished in a week, and for about $3,500.
What to Look for in a Decontamination Company
As you can see, Mark could have saved a lot of time, energy, and money with the right help. But finding a specialist can be overwhelming, and it isn’t easy to know who has your best interests at heart. That’s why we created this list, to provide a bit more insight into what to look for when hiring a Certified Decontamination Specialist.
- Accuracy: Every Utah Certified Decontamination Specialist should use methods corroborated by research state regulations. You can cross-reference their procedures with the Utah Department of Health, Utah Code R392-600, the EPA or NIOSH, and other reputable decontamination specialists.
- Transparency: Seek out a CDS that discusses their prices. While it is normal that the phone consultation will be something of an estimation, their formal quote should provide some explanation of what is included in the cost: testing, labor, materials, permit fees, etc.
- Appropriate Tone: Meth is a serious problem, and its residue can be dangerous. However, a trustworthy professional should seek to educate, not incite panic. Be aware of their tone, and don’t fall for scare tactics.
- Guarantee of Work: Be sure your selected company offers a guarantee. Accurate testing and efficient meth removal are what Certified Decontamination Specialists do.
Of course, it isn’t always easy to know which companies hold themselves to these standards. That means your best bet is research and to seek a second opinion (especially when the prices or processes sound extreme).
Naturally, AEI Decon is happy to help in any way we can. We pride ourselves on our accuracy and our commitment to education. We’re also known for ensuring our customers understand every step of decontamination and guarantee our work. If you’re in Utah, feel free to call us at (801) 888-6698.