WANT YOUR HOUSE TO LOOK LIKE A WINTER WONDERLAND this holiday season but don't have the time or know-how to pull it off? Christmas Decor by Terminix (yes, the same company that eradicates bugs and pests from homes and offices) provides decorating services for the outside of your home, including lights, installation, maintenance, disassembly and storage.
"We focus on the exterior," says Tony Gugliuzza, business development director at Terminix. "What we focus on is the gutter lines, the fascia lines on the roof and the roof ridges. … Then we come down to the ground level and use LED mini lights for shrubs, bushes (and) trees. We also do stake lighting … and line your walkways and driveways with that."
Gugliuzza says his company uses only LED lightbulbs for safety, longevity and economy, and customers lease the lights from Terminix. Homeowners can choose from a range of light colors and sizes and can change their choices from holiday to holiday. The decoration package starts at $449 and includes installation, maintenance, taking down the decorations and storing them in the company's warehouse. The decorating scheme can be as simple or elaborate as a homeowner desires.
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When a customer calls, Gugliuzza says, an employee takes a photo of the house and downloads it into an app that allows the company to decorate the house virtually. Christmas Decor by Terminix then meets with the homeowner and adds or deletes items on a computer screen and changes colors to complete the decorating scheme.
"It's definitely a white-glove service we do," he says. "There are only so many days in the season that we can get this done." Because the installers' calendars fill up quickly, he recommends homeowners call for service before Dec. 15.
It usually takes about 3 1/2 hours to complete decorations on a 4,000-square-foot house. It may take longer for a house covered in lights (re: Clark Griswold). In addition to leasing lights to customers, the company also sells wreaths, trees, illuminated figures, large bows and other decor, even when there is no contract to decorate a house.
"As far as the homeowners getting on ladders, fighting with strings of lights, trying to find out what bulbs are burned out," Gugliuzza says Christmas Decor by Terminix takes care of that. "One big thing is lots of people don't want to store (Christmas decorations)."
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The company's service doesn't end when it flips on the lights. "If there are any problems throughout the season, we get out there within 24 hours," he says. It also does spot checks to make sure the installation and equipment are in working order.
The company, which began decorating houses in New Orleans six years ago, gets calls asking them to decorate the inside of houses, but currently it only deals with exteriors, Gugliuzza says. The service does, however, decorate for other holidays, including Halloween and Mardi Gras. Customers also can have their home decorated for a one-time event.
The company also does custom lighting and decor packages for businesses, including an installation at the Audubon Zoo in which it wrapped the trunks and limbs of two oak trees near the entrance with mini LED lights as part of Audubon Zoo Lights, a display of animal-themed lights, live entertainment and more on select dates through December.
Every year, Christmas Decor by Terminix also decorates the Ronald McDonald House, which provides housing to children receiving medical treatment and their families, pro bono. "To put a smile on those kids' faces, it's the least we can do for them," Gugliuzza says.
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