Importance of Termite Inspections for Homebuyers

February 06, 2018

Importance of Termite Inspections for Homebuyers

Buying a new home is an exciting process, but there is a lot to consider! Aside from all the obvious factors such as the layout and size of the home, you must also know what’s going on in less obvious places. This is why home inspections are necessary. Before you commit to an agreement, an inspector will come to the home and check the roofing, plumbing, insulation, structure and more. Something else to consider is a termite check, which is not included in a standard home inspection.

Termites are nearly invisible, so it takes a trained eye to perform the inspection. You can negotiate who pays for this service – you or the current owner – but it’s something that you don’t want to pass over. For $200 or less, you can avoid costly headaches down the road. In fact, your lender may require you to have a termite inspection before the sale is finalized.

What Does a Termite Inspection Include?

Termite inspectors are pest control experts who know how to identify the hidden signs and dangers of a termite infestation. Here are some of the things they look for.

  • Signs of wood damage. Generally, you won’t see any damage to the structure of the home because termites eat from the inside. A termite inspector will look for hollowness in the wood beams. Also, if there is noticeable damage, termites will leave behind small bits of mud, which is different from traditional wood rotting.
  • Evidence of swarmers. As termite colonies become established, they start producing mature adults called alates. In the spring, the alates leave their nests all at once and will try to get outdoors. A trained exterminator will look for signs of winged insects by windows and doors.
  • Signs of mud tubes. Pest control professionals also look for mud tubes. These tubes can be found along the foundation, in the crawlspace, near pipes, or in the attic. Mud tubes are essentially traveling highways for termites to get around.
  • Mud in construction joints. Termites are excellent builders, and they know how to erect homes in the smallest places, including construction joints. A trained eye will check for mud crammed into these small holes and cracks.

What if Termite Activity is Found?

If termite activity is found, things aren’t over yet. If the problem is minor, treating the home for termites may stop the infestation. Some parts of the country are more likely to have problems than others. It’s also possible that what the inspector is seeing is old activity. If the homeowners dealt with the infestation already, they must provide you with documentation of the treatment.

Are you purchasing a home and need a termite inspection done? Or have you recently bought a home and are suspecting termite activity? Call Heritage Pest Control to find out what’s going on behind your walls.