Don't Buy A New Home Without A Termite Inspection


Buying a new home can be an exciting time filled with dreams of a bright future. You wouldn't dream of buying a home without an inspection to assess the electrical and plumbing systems and to check the structure of the building. But, don't overlook the importance of a termite inspection. These aggressive bugs can sometimes go unnoticed in a typical pre-sale home inspection. Here's what you need to know about termite infestations when you are buying a new home.

Why do termites infest homes?

Termites are detritivores, which means they eat dead plant material, including wood. They have specially equipped mouth parts that are able to rip apart wood and a special digestive system that allows them to digest cellulose. That means the wood in your home is a tasty buffet for termites.  While they can eat living plant parts, and will attack a newly-constructed home, they typically seek out old wood to set up their residence. Don't be lulled into thinking termites only attack wooden buildings, as even brick buildings have some wood parts that are susceptible to a termite infestation.

Signs of a Termite Infestation

Termites are generally silent and remain unseen. They may go unnoticed until they have caused considerable damage to the structure of the home. The seller may be unaware of their presence when he sells you the home. If you have not had a professional termite inspection performed, there are some things you can do to check for the presence of termites on your own.

  • Tunnels: Check exposed beams, wood around the foundation and any other areas of exposed wood for the presence of tiny tunnels. These will look like the tunnels inside an ant's nest. They are the trails the termites created as they chomped their way through the wood.
  • Frass or Feces: As termites tunnel their way through your foundation or walls, they leave behind frass or feces. This may look like tiny pellets, or may look like fine sawdust. The color of the frass depends on the type of wood the termites are eating, but it is typically shades of brown.
  • Sagging Floors or Walls: A severe or long-term infestation may have already compromised the structure of the home. This may cause floors and walls to sag or feel spongy.
  • Discarded Wings: Termites develop wings and take flight in the spring as they seek our mates and begin new colonies. Once they mate, the wings are shed and the termites set up residence in a new area. If you discover piles of translucent wings around windows, or in other areas of your home, the chances are good that your home is host to a termite colony.

What should you do if you suspect a termite infestation?

If you have not purchased the home yet, you can request that the seller has a termite inspection performed. You should also ask for records of any prior inspections or extermination attempts. Some states require that records of termite problems be disclosed before selling a home. You can then make exterminating the termites and repairing any damage one of the conditions the seller must meet before you purchase the home. Your real estate agent can help you with this process.

If you have already purchased the home, you have some options: 1) Keep the home and take responsibility of exterminating the termites and repairing the home. 2) You may be able to nullify the sale and return the home to the seller. This depends on many variables, such as whether the seller knew (or should have known) about the termite problem and your state real estate regulations. According to NOLO, an online source of legal information, almost all states have some regulations governing mandatory disclosure of defects in the home when selling real estate. If you are unsure about your state's disclosure requirements, talk to your real estate agent or check with your state or local statutes.

For more information, contact a company like Tri-County Termite & Pest Control


17 May 2016

Understanding Pest Control Products

Hey, I’m Trinity Bonner. Welcome to my site. I am here to discuss pest control products for individuals and professionals. There are various levels of pest control products on the market today. In the initial phases, individuals can use commercially available products to keep pests out of the home and kill those that invade. If the infestation worsens or continues, it may be necessary to call in a professional to use stronger products to eliminate the problem. I will use this site to explore these products, and their application requirements, in more detail. Please visit my site often to learn more.