Termites are known to cause massive amounts of property damage in almost every state and territory of the country. Because of this, termite inspections are typically mandated by lenders as part of the mortgage process.
If a termite infestation or damage is detected by the inspector, treatment for any existing infestation must be made and repair issues must be successfully negotiated before the mortgage is granted and the sale can close.
Once the real estate transaction closes, the scheduling of periodic inspections and continued termite control efforts may be forgotten or postponed. If you have recently purchased a home and have been lax about efforts to control termite activity, here are some worthwhile actions you can take now to help ensure that your home remains protected from these damaging pests.
Be diligent about wood storage
One of the most common ways in which homeowners unwittingly invite termites onto their property is by supplying them with an attractive food source. Some of the ways in which this occurs include:
- allowing firewood, kindling or building materials to be stacked or piled near the home or garage
- storing lumber and wooden items in the crawlspace
- allowing leaf litter, sawdust, cardboard and other wood-based materials to accumulate on the ground
- using wood chips for mulch or landscaping near the home
Cleaning around the perimeter of the home to remove these attractants will help to discourage the attention of termite colonies and prevent an infestation issue from developing.
Deal with moisture issues
Along with wood fibers, termites need a plentiful source of hydration for their colony to survive and grow. Homeowners who have damp crawlspaces or wet areas near their foundation are sending a welcoming signal to thirsty termites.
Fixing leaking pipes and garden hoses, installing gaskets in hydrants and outdoor faucets and improving landscaping to fill in existing low spots will help dry up moist areas and prevent termites from settling near your home.
Develop a long-term termite control strategy
Along with removing potential attractants for termites, like wood and moisture, homeowners should also consider developing and implementing a long-term strategy to keep their home safe from termite infestations.
Depending on the area where the home is located and the termite species involved, homeowners may want to consider options such as permanent bait stations, annual pest inspections and periodic chemical treatments of the home, outbuildings and grounds.
To learn more about devising the right long-term termite control strategy for your property, homeowners should discuss their situation with a termite control technician in their area.