Inspecting for Termites in a Potential Home Purchase

Inspecting for Termites in a Potential Home Purchase

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As if making sure that any home you’re looking to buy is structurally sound wasn’t difficult enough, you also need to be very mindful of the presence of termites and other timber related pests. To the untrained eye, termites might go unnoticed during the excitement of viewing and making offers on property which is why an independent inspection and survey is always beneficial.

In this article, we’ll take you through exactly what termites are, what they can do to your property and show you how with the help of an inspector you can identify them.

What are Termites?

Termites are a species of insect that look a lot like the regular ant, sometimes fooling homeowners into thinking they’re harmless. Termites like their privacy and don’t enjoy coming out into the open making them difficult to detect.

Unfortunately, termite’s primary food source is cellulose which is found in wood as well as a variety of other timber based objects such as books, paper and insulation.

You will often find termites swarming in the spring and summer which is when they’re most likely to take nest in your home with the average colony consisting of upwards of 3 million termites. Needless to say, the damage they can cause is considerable.

How Can I Detect Them?

Termites will often gather and nest in difficult to reach spaces meaning that you will rarely see them out in the open. What you can look for are;

  • Termite wings found inside and outside the home. Termites fly to new structures to create nests and once they’ve done so, they will shed their wings and begin to reproduce.
  • Another sign is the presence of mud tunnels. These are small pencil sized tunnels which you may find protruding from the exterior walls of your property. These tunnels provide respite and shelter for termites.
  • Bubbling or cracked paint is another tell-tale sign. Termites will often leave destruction in their wake so look for signs of damaged timber as well as sagging floors and ceilings.

Professional Termite Inspections

If you’re unsure as to whether you have a termite infestation, you really do need to arrange for a survey. Termite focused building inspections in Perth are available through one of several building surveying firms. These inspections and their subsequent reports will tell you exactly where the termite infestations are and suggest ways for their removal.

Remedial Action

The presence of termites accounts for hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of damage to buildings across Australia per year. The longer they’re left in your home, the more damage they will cause.

If you’ve found termites in a property you already own, we suggest that you call in the experts immediately but you can also take a few preventative measures to improve the situation. Start by;

  • Eliminating all moisture problems in and around your home. Leaking pipes need to be fixed as soon as possible as termites love damp and warm environments.
  • Remove all possible food sources including stacks of firewood, dead tree stumps and other debris from around your home.  

Once you have a handle on the issue, your termite infestation will be much easier to manage until you can have them formally removed.

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