If you’ve spotted rodents in your home, your first instinct might be to run away screaming. The second thought, of course, is a tad more rational: You know you need to get rid of the problem, and you’re probably wondering what it will cost.

Like most things concerning home ownership, the cost of rodent control can vary according to a number of factors. A job is still a job, and the amount of time and effort required to do the job will determine the final cost. The following factors will influence the ease or difficulty of eradicating your rodent problem:

An inspection. First you need an inspection by a rodent control company, to determine the type of pest present along with the extent of the infestation. As with most pests, seeing one rodent probably does not mean you only have one rodent present in your home. Colonies can be hidden away, out of sight.

Number of rodents. The inspection will reveal the approximate extent of the problem, or in layman’s terms, the number of rodents in your house. Obviously, a larger problem requires more effort to control.

Methods used. Trapping rodents can be much more time consuming than using poison, but some homeowners do prefer it. And of course, there is a big time difference between kill traps and live traps, because with live traps you must relocate the animals somewhere else (often not an option, or difficult to achieve).

Necessary repairs. If you don’t block up access points that the rodents used to get into your home, more are likely to move right in. So part of your rodent control effort should be aimed at preventing a recurrence of the problem.

Overall, rodent control can start at a few hundred dollars, and go up from there depending on the level of service required. However, when you measure the potential damage to your home and health, the cost of not removing a pest greatly outweighs the price of rodent control services.