With the real estate market in full swing, you may be in the process of selling or buying a home (or both at the same time), or watching your neighbors buy or sell theirs. Or, maybe you’re watching the latest episode of HGTV’s Chip and Joanna as they fix up your dream home.
Either way, you probably are busy taking care of your property while planning adventures for later in the summer.
Most homeowners protect their investment with insurance that covers tornados, fires, and basic damages. However, you may be missing a silent threat that ISN’T covered under your policy.
1 in 5 homes are affected by termites, that’s more than tornados and fires combined.
Here in Kansas, we deal with subterranean termites, meaning they live primarily underground. Sneaky little pests aren’t they?
Often times the first thing a homeowner will notice that alerts them to a problem are termite swarmers. Swarming termites are winged reproductives that swarm out to start a new colony. In Kansas termite swarming season is March-May. It can be tricky to detect, but a termite swarm could look something like this.
As pest professionals, we recommend you get a termite inspection annually, as a problem could arise at any time if not treated or monitored. That said, we want to offer a few helpful tips that you can use around the house to keep your home safe and secure.
- A good flashlight
- A probing tool (a screwdriver works well)
- Clothes to get dirty (pants and long sleeves)
Exterior inspection: Inspect the perimeter of the foundation of your home. Look for mud tubes or mud between construction joints. Pay close attention anywhere there is wood to ground contact. Termites eat the soft cellulose in wood, leaving behind the hard wood grain. Wood damaged by termites will have mud/dirt in the grooves created.
To make your home less attractive to termites move firewood piles away from the home and replace wood mulch with decorative rocks.
Interior inspection: Be on the look out for mud tubes or abnormalities in the sheet rock. Pay close attention to baseboards, window and door trim. You want to make sure to inspect areas where plumbing pipes and electrical wires enter the home (kitchen, laundry, bathrooms, utility room). Check in any crawl spaces too (you’ll want to dress in old clothes and be prepared to get dirty). Always check your surroundings for debris and watch your head. Inspect foundation walls, sill plates, headers, floor joists, sub floor and support pillars. During your inspection keep an eye out for any water leaks. Excess moisture attracts termites.
If you think you notice any signs of termite activity, or if you want to let us do the dirty work, call us right away. We will send a certified pest technician to search for termite activity and any other pests that you want to eliminate. Remember, don’t wait till it’s too late!