I agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

New Jersey Pest Control License: Everything You Need to Know

Start a new career in the pest control industry. In this growing field, you can help homeowners and business owners feel comfortable in their spaces. You can either work for a company or run your own business. Read this guide to learn how to earn your New Jersey pest control license.

Does New Jersey Require a Pest Control License?

Yes, you need a New Jersey pest control license.

Are There Different Types of Licenses for New Jersey?

A private applicator applies pesticides for an agricultural purpose. This role is either done on one's own land, on rental land, or on land owned or rented by the applicator's employer. Ranchers and farmers are examples of private applicators.

Commercial applicators apply pesticides for non-agricultural purposes. Examples include landscapers, property managers, and even applicators who do work on behalf of a government agency. Individuals who are commercial applicators for hire also must obtain a pesticide applicator business license. Salary and wages for commercial applicators depend on a variety of factors. Some people find enough work to exclusively focus on pest control; others use this skill as a way to expand their existing reach in the market.

How Do I Become Licensed for Pest Control in New Jersey?

To get licensed in this state, you'll have to pass pesticide applicator certification exams. There are several different exams. First, everyone who applies to be a pest control applicator must pass the "Core" certification exam. The, you'll also take a "Category" certification exam. The particular exam will depend on your projected jobs. For instance, there are different exams related to aquatic pest control, termites, mosquito control, pet grooming, and water sanitation. There are 13 different categories with subcategories.

To take the Core exam, you'll submit proof that you have completed a Basic Pesticide Training Course. These courses are offered in the state at various times. Pre-registration is required for admittance to these courses.

To take a Category exam, you'll complete a minimum of 40 hours of on-the-job training in the particular category. These hours must consist of separate applications. Categories 10 (Demo & Research) and 13 (School IPM) are exempt, and Category 11 (Aerial pest control) only requires aerial training. For Categories 3A (Ornamental), 3B (Turf), 7A (General and household pest control), and 7B (Termites and other wood destroying insects), you can take specific training courses.

When you sign up for an exam, check out what your county's Rutgers Cooperative Extension office has to offer. They should offer study manuals. Most of the exams are open book. The closed book exams are categories 1A (Plant), 2 (Forest pest control), 3A (Ornamental), 3B (Turf), 3C (Interior plantscaping), 7A (General and household pest control), 8B (Mosquito control), and 13 (School IPM).

Private and commercial pesticide applicators need to recertify within five years. This process involves attending continuing education courses or retaking a certification exam. Commercial pesticide applicators are required to pay an annual licensing fee of $80. Private pesticide applicators receive their license for free.

There is also a category of pesticide operators. An operator does not need to pass an exam. Rather, he or she needs to complete the Basic Pesticide Training Course and complete 40 hours of on-the-job training. Operators need to renew their license at an annual cost of $30.

The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection oversees pesticide applicator licensing and compliance. Exams are given at certain times. Registration for an exam begins 15 minutes prior to the start of the exam, and a photo ID is required for entry. Bring a #2 pencil with you. Most exams are one hour and 45 minutes long.

How to Use Your Pest Control License to Get a Job

You can learn about jobs through online listings. Some jobs will include residential services, while others will be commercial responsibilities. It may be more desirable to work a job during regular business hours than something that involves sporadic appointments. During interviews, expect questions about your relevant work experience. The average pay rate for technicians is $20 per hour.

Pest Control Industry Trends

The New Jersey Pest Management Association is a useful resource to learn about industry trends. You’ll gain knowledge about efficient strategies. You're entering the field at a good time, as people are more concerned about eliminating pests. Rather than handling it themselves, people more frequently turn to professionals.

Dangers of Being a Pest Control Technician

The chemicals are extremely dangerous. Follow protocol when transporting items in your vehicle. Staying safe is key, and proper gear is required. Other hazards are related to the job include exposure to the sun. Bright clothing is recommended when working near roadways.

Is My Pest Control License Only Valid in New Jersey?

Your New Jersey pest control license is only valid within the state.

If you have lost your license, call PCP at 609-984-6507 for a replacement. Also contact the department if you have changed your address or name, as they'll be able to update their files.

How Often Do I Need to Renew My Pest Control License in New Jersey?

An operator needs to renew a license annually. Private and commercial applicators have to maintain their licenses by attending continuing education courses. Eight units in the core and 16 units in the categories are required every five years. Alternatively, you may retake a certification exam within five years to recertify.


New to the Pest Control industry and looking to get licensed, or already a seasoned veteran and want to take your business to the next level? Find out more about Housecall Pro’s all-in-one Pest Control Software.