One of the many areas that homeowners tend to ignore is pest control. Often times we hire a local pest control service to maintain our home’s pest control protection. This is meant for inside and outside of the home. Once we sign the contract, we tend to forget and move on. It is another example of an out-of-sight and out-of-mind scenario. Unfortunately, termites are nothing to forget about. They can cause major damage to your home and it can happen very quickly and without any warning at all. Do termites spread from house to house? Yes, subterranean termites create mud tubes and travel as far as 230 feet from their colony for food. Also, drywood termites can fly from house to house.
Let’s take a look below at what termites are and what we should be aware of.
What Are Termites
Termites have translucent bodies and a creamy white look to them. They are grouped into three categories. Workers, soldiers, and reproductives are the termite groups. Termites are often compared to a small grain of rice.
- Reproductives and swarmers are winged termites and often mistaken as flying ants.
- Worker termites have similar bodies to the swarmers.
- Soldier termites are similar to swarmers. The difference is their large crushing mandibles and oversized heads.
In Florida, the drywood termite is the most prevalent and they love the wood in your home.
How Termites Spread From House to House
The most common termite is called the “drywood” termite which flies from house to house. These termites typically enter the home via cracks and crevices in your home’s foundation, sidewalls, or even plumbing openings in the concrete foundation. Their main goal is to find the closest food source. This is typically the wood in your attic space. Any damp wooded areas of your home are a strong attractor to drywood termites.
Next, you have your “subterranean” termites which crawl underground. These termite types can travel away from their colonies to find food. They are known to travel up to 230 feet in any direction away from their colony. Tunnels in the soil and mud tubes allow them to travel from home to home or building to building looking for food.
Since termites love cellulose-based products, they are known to be attracted to natural materials such as cotton. So, not only can they travel in the soil, but they can also grab on to some clothing and travel with you from place to place.
How Can I Prevent Termites
First, keep any excess wood away from your home. Termites love to feast on wood products and having the excess wood, such as pallets or damaged fence parts only attract the termites to your home. Next, you should look at what type of wood chips or mulch you are using in your yard.
Certain wood chips or mulch are high attractors to termites. You will want to purchase the correct wood type of wood chip or mulch before placing them in your garden and around your shrubs and trees.
Also, keep an eye on the amount of moisture that you have in and around your home. Make sure that all sprinkler heads are pointing away from your home. Also, the downspouts on your gutters push all water away from the house. Finally, make sure that your landscaping slopes away from the foundation of your home. This ensures that no water is pooling around your foundation as it has nowhere to go.
Termites love moist and damp areas as they seek out their meals. Anytime you can keep your home and its surroundings free from wood and damp situations is the easiest way to deter termites from your home. Of course, getting an annual termite inspection could ensure the protection of your home before the damage is done.
How Much Does It Cost
Termite treatments can be a rather costly upfront expense. Keep in mind that you are investing in your home and your family’s safety. One of the first things that you can do to protect your home is to sign off on that termite control service. The national average upfront costs for termite control services can run about $480 to $580.
Unfortunately, termite treatments vary based on the size of your home and the area around your foundation. Creating a barrier is key and this could cost you $3 to $16 per linear foot. Roughly, $300 to $1,000 for your termite treatment service. This is on the higher end if you are already showing signs of termite damage.
Other Recommended Maintenance
While taking care of termites in the home, take a look around to make sure you aren’t missing any additional pests. One area to look at is the bathroom. If you notice ants in the sink or in other areas of the bathroom, you will need to get rid of them. To do this, figure out the entry points and see what is attracting them to the bathroom. Then, take care of it.
Next, you not only don’t want to deal with termites, but you also don’t want to deal with mosquitos. Where do mosquitos live? They live in wooded areas, moist and damp areas, standing water, and marshlands. Do what you can to make sure your yard is not attracting the mosquitos and read up on some ways to prevent them.
Lastly, you don’t want to have a pest infestation and not know it! What are the signs of a pest infestation? Pest droppings, anthills, plant damage, and signs of nests. If you are unsure how to get rid of the pests, contact a professional.
When Do I Call A Professional
Calling on a professional pest control service the moment you take ownership of a home or building is one of the smartest investments that you can make. Keeping pests at bay in and around your home will only provide you with a higher level of comfort and protection. Make sure to ask about all of the types of services that your local pest control company offers.
Termite protection is just as important as keeping the ants and roaches from invading. If you are unsure of who the best company is in your area, you can always reach out to your local home inspection team for a referral. Your home inspection team can also provide you with additional home inspection services, such as termite inspections.
Hiring the right pest control service is key. In many cases, your local pest control company might have so many clients that their employees go too quickly as they treat your home. The moment that you notice any insect in or around your home, you should not be afraid to call your pest control company. Typical contracts allow you the opportunity to reach out to them for additional services.
The goal here is year-round pest control prevention. If you need a recommendation on which local pest control company provides which pest control service, then call your local home inspection team. They might also conduct services such as termite inspections that can assist you before calling a pest control service. Call on Atkinson Home Inspection for your termite control services in Clermont, The Villages, and Orlando.