How Much Does Bee Removal Cost?

Ben Kissam
Written by Ben Kissam
Reviewed by Tara Dudley
Updated July 26, 2022
bumblebee sits on purple flower in flowerbed
Photographer, Basak Gurbuz Derman / Moment / Getty Images

Highlights

  • Bee removal costs $75–$2,000.

  • The type of bee infestation you have could impact the price.

  • 80,000 bees can live in a colony—the size of infestation matters, too.

  • Location in the home or yard can significantly impact costs.

  • Avoid DIY bee removal if you're allergic or afraid of bees.

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Removing a beehive doesn’t have to sting—both literally and when it comes to your wallet. The average cost of removing a bee colony could include fees of $150 to $500, though this cost will vary depending on the type of hive. A displaced swarm (a colony without a hive) will cost up to $150 to capture and relocate. 

Ease of access also plays a factor, as a local professional beekeeper or exterminator may need to get into your walls or ceilings to find a hive. So count on carpentry costs of up to $2,000 after the removal has been completed.

How Much Does Bee Removal Cost by Type?

Before deciding between relocation or extermination, hire a professional beekeeper to identify the type of beehives on your property. The removal costs will differ depending on the type of bees, as each requires special considerations.

Bee Type Cost
Honeybees $75 – $2,000
Carpenter Bees $75 – $500
Bumblebees $75 – $500
Africanized Honeybees $100 – $1,000
Bee Swarms$150

Here's a further breakdown of each species of bee and the cost variations you can expect.

Honeybees

This is one of the most common types of bee colonies found in residential areas. Honeybee hives often contain honey and honeycombs, so be sure to ask your pro if they will be removing those (honey can attract other pests if left unattended). Honeybee hive removal will cost $75 to $2,000, as some colonies can include up to 50,000 bees. 

Carpenter Bees

These bees do not live in large hives, but they do burrow into wood to make their home. The damage to your home’s structure is small at first, but will worsen if left untreated. Luckily, carpenter bees rarely sting and are rather docile, so the cost to remove them is $75 to $500. 

Bumblebees

A professional beekeeper may actually encourage you to keep a bumblebee hive, as these buzzy buddies rarely sting, are very docile, and live in small colonies of 50 to 150 bees. They’re also incredibly effective pollinators and your garden will thank you for keeping them around. 

Certain regulations exist to protect various bumblebee species, so a specialist will have to relocate the bees to adhere to local guidelines. Bumblebee removal will cost $75 to $500. 

Africanized Honeybees

The Africanized honeybee, otherwise known as the “killer bee,” can be extremely dangerous if provoked. Do not try to remove this type of bee colony yourself, as they will chase people up to a quarter mile to defend the nest. Because they’re armed with a temper along with their stingers, hiring a pro to remove killer bees will cost $100 to $1,000. 

Bee Swarms

A swarm is a group of bees without a nest or hive, typically led by a queen as they search for a new home. Bee swarms are relatively docile and easy to control, so removal tends to be on the cheaper side. Expect to pay up to $150 to remove a bee swarm from your property

Bee Removal Cost Breakdown

Though removing the hive itself can be a relatively quick and painless process, there are a number of other factors to consider when sourcing a pro to identify, relocate, or exterminate an active bee colony. Here’s a breakdown of how you can expect to spend your money. 

Location in Home or Property

Where bees are located in your home can drive up the price you pay for removal. 

For example, bees that have festered in a structural wall of your home will likely cost more to remove than a hive attached to a gutter outside. At that point, you also have to figure in repair costs, such as installing new drywall, repairing a deck, or fixing parts of your roof that must be removed to gain access to the bees.

There are no hard and fast rules, but here are some cost guidelines based on location:

LocationCost
Roof/attic$200 – $1,100
Inside of wall/ceiling$200 – $750
Chimney$200 – $1,500
Tree$200 – $650

Identification

You’ll need to hire a professional beekeeper to identify the type of bees on your property. This typically costs $75 per hour, but could increase depending on the hive’s location and the infestation’s severity. Be on the lookout for companies that offer free inspections and quotes. 

Size of Infestation

Bees live in colonies that can range from 20,000 to 80,000 critters in one hive. If you have a large hive or multiple hives, this will impact the price as a professional bee removal expert will have more work to do to get rid of them.

Expect to pay around $1,000 to $1,500 for a large nest removal—more if there are multiple, though each won't cost this much because the initial price likely includes labor, such as cutting into a wall, to gain access. A small, singular hive might only cost $500 or less depending on location.

Professional Removal

Hire a bee removal specialist to take care of the problem. Removing a hive will cost $75 to $2,000, depending on the size of the colony, the location of the beehives, and where you live. 

Relocation or Extermination

Some bee removal specialists will offer a steep discount if you opt for removal instead of extermination. Relocation will cost $100 to $1,000, and is better for the planet’s bee population. If you choose to exterminate the bee colony, expect to pay $150 to $1,000.

Rebuilding

If the bee colony has made its home behind a wall or in your ceiling, a beekeeper will have to perform some demolition before removal. After the bees are gone, you may have to hire a local carpenter to rebuild the damage. 

Here are some of the rebuilding costs you may encounter:

  • Drywall: If a bee removal expert knocked out some drywall, you will pay $275–$750 to get it replaced. 

  • Ceilings: Bees are occasionally attracted to ceilings. If a specialist had to destroy some portions of your ceiling to get at a hive, expect to pay $300–$1,000 for repairs. 

  • Decks: Some types of bees like to make their home under or inside of a deck. Deck repairs will cost $250–$2,500 depending on size, type, and accrued damage. 

  • Soffit: This is a board that is often located on the underside of a roof eave, helping to bridge the gap between siding and the outer edge of a roof. Unfortunately, the location of the soffit makes it a likely target for beehives. Repairing the soffit will cost $6–$20 per linear foot to repair.

How Much Does It Cost to Remove Bees Near You?

The cost of identifying and removing an active beehive varies depending on where you live, so talk to a local contractor to get an accurate quote. Typically, removing a live bee colony will be slightly more expensive in heavily populated areas due to regional inflation. Local weather conditions, the number of professional beekeepers in the area, and other factors can also impact the overall cost. 

Here are some price estimates for bee removal services in cities throughout the U.S.:

  • Minneapolis: $160

  • San Francisco: $240

  • Denver: $130

  • Chicago: $160

  • Los Angeles: $240

  • Phoenix: $110

  • Baltimore: $230

How Much Does It Cost to Remove Bees Yourself?

You may not have to hire a pro to remove bees, as some species rarely sting and are relatively docile. Carpenter bees, for instance, will sometimes leave an area if you play loud music. Be aware, there are some bee species that are simply too dangerous to handle on your own, such as Africanized honeybees. If you do decide to remove pests yourself, you will save the $100 to $500 cost for labor but may still have to hire a contractor to repair anything you damaged to reach the hive.

Consider Relocating the Hive

Though no one wants to be surrounded by a nonstop buzzzz while they garden, bees play a vital role in the planet’s ecosystem. Because of this, professional beekeepers could offer a discount if you opt for relocation instead of extermination. Additionally, some beekeepers will remove healthy honeybee hives for free.

Bee colonies are on the decline due to Colony Collapse Disorder, so it’s a great idea to opt for relocation. Bees are responsible for more than 80% of pollination worldwide, and one-third of the world’s crops depend on them.

FAQs About Bee Removal

How do I find a professional to remove active bee colonies?

Protect your loved ones by choosing a reliable and reputable bee removal specialist. Take time to do relevant research by speaking to family and friends for recommendations. You can also simply give the professional a call to discuss the removal process.

What questions should I ask when hiring a pro to remove pests?

To make sure the removal process goes smoothly, try asking your pro the following questions: 

  • Are you licensed and insured? Bee removal is not without risk of bodily harm, so you will want to make sure your pro is sufficiently licensed and insured to do the job. 

  • How much experience do you have with relocating beehives? Relocating a live beehive is a tricky and involved process. You will want a pro with plenty of experience. 

  • Do you remove the honey and honeycomb? Leaving the honey and honeycomb after a bee removal can invite other pests. Make sure the beekeeper removes both honey and honeycomb. You may also want to ask if you can have some of the honey for, uh, testing purposes. 

  • Do you relocate the bees alive? Some laws and regulations require that bees still be alive after the relocation process. Ask your pro about their adherence to local guidelines. 

  • Do you have any references from previous clients? A competent beekeeper or pest control specialist should have plenty of references from previous clients. Email or call these people to hear about the overall experience.

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