Guildford Borough Council has announced that it will start to charge for rat and mice infestation treatments, bringing it into line with other Surrey districts from July 2021.
Cllr James Steel, the lead councillor for the environment, said that Guildford Borough Council is currently the only local authority in Surrey to offer free pest control services to all residents.
Charges for rats and mice treatments in homes will be introduced on July 1, 2021, while a free service will still be available for residents who receive Universal Credit, Income Support, Pension Credit, Job-Seeker’s Allowance and Council Tax Reduction.
Mr Steel said: “We are pleased to be able to continue to offer a free service to those residents who perhaps cannot afford to pay for this essential service. An inability to pay should not be a barrier to maintaining basic environmental health standards, and we do not want residents to have to think twice when they need our pest control services.
“However, this service currently runs at a loss and at a time when budgets are stretched for all councils we have taken the decision to bring us in line with neighbouring boroughs and districts to enable us to continue to offer a high-quality service.”
The current contract to supply pest control services is held by SDK Environmental Ltd, which also works with five other local authorities in Surrey.