Louisville Termite Inspection

louisville termites eating wood as wdoWhy do you need a termite inspection?

I tell folks all the time, a home either has termites, or will. That’s just the truth. The U.S. is a dominant area for termites anyway, with some places more susceptible than others. We happen to be in an area where termites thrive. If you do a little research online, you’ll find that the money spent in the U.S. every year due to termite damage alone is nothing short of phenomenal. These guys, these termites, are mean little critters. So it’s very important to have your home inspected.

Read below for more information.

Why do they eat our homes?

We have all this lumber, trees, dead trees in the forest, and all this stuff laying in the back yard that they could be eating on. Why are they eating on my home? That’s a great question and another reason why you need the inspection. We build our homes right where they thrive. Termites have to keep a certain temperature, humidity, and moisture to survive. Their sweet spot is just below the freeze line, which is exactly where we pour the footers to our homes, about 18 inches down. We’ve basically just built them a path directly to the sill plate.

Where do they go once inside?

Typically, they’re going to come up through the footer, then into your crawlspace, sill plate, band boards, and behind the walls. You may never know they are there until you notice, “Where is all of this sawdust coming from?” By then you could already have significant damage done to your home. This is why it’s a smart preventative move to do treatment whether you have current evidence of termites or not. Most builders in our area pre-treat the soil before they build.

louisville termite inspection victory!!!How does a termite inspection work?

Termite inspectors must be licensed in both Kentucky and Indiana. Our termite inspection is pretty extensive. We go through the entire home, like we would during a home inspection. We’re looking for signs of termites or previous treatment and/or conditions that are conducive to termites.

Tell-tale signs for termites

Frass – a combination of body parts, fecal matter, and debris dropped by termites.

Mud tubes – sandy looking tunnels climbing up your walls that termites travel through. A similar tube allows swarmers to leave and search for locations to begin new colonies.

Abandoned wings – termites are able to drop their wings when necessary and may leave them behind for us to find.

Ideal conditions – any place where wood meets, or is close to, the ground. This is a big welcome mat for termites. Firewood stacked against your house, for example, could be carrying termites right into your home.

Does anyone offer free termite inspections?

Yes. Some inspection companies will even promote this as part of their package deal. A word of caution, though, this is America and you get what you pay for. Watch out for people with ulterior motives. A company who offers a free inspection might treat for termites, and therefore gain business from you in other ways. On the other hand, they may not be very good at termite inspections, so they don’t charge for them. Keep in mind, there is cost involved for the business to obtain and maintain their termite license. Who is going to crawl through a nasty, wet, damp, spider-web covered, crawlspace looking for termites and not expect to be compensated for it?

Should I get a termite inspection with my home inspection?

Absolutely. Most lenders require a termite/pest inspection before closing anyway.

Exceptions are

  1. You’ve had a termite inspection by a licensed firm within the last 90 days. Even though termites can be absent today and present tomorrow, lenders had to draw the line somewhere. They’ve determined that termite inspections are acceptable for up to 90 days.
  2. If you are using a VA loan, it is usually the seller’s responsibility to pay for and produce that termite letter or report.

If these two circumstances do not apply to you, then we highly recommend ordering a termite inspection with your home inspection. Again, this is another potential cost and hidden surprise that could easily be avoided.

By ordering with your home inspection you’ll likely be able to complete the termite inspection at the same time and thereby skip an additional appointment and report. Home inspectors also make excellent termite inspectors because they go through the entire home, instead of just the foundation, and they have a better understanding of how different components of the home can work together to create additional hot spots for termites.

How much does a termite inspection cost?

Termite inspections, like everything else, are kind of all over the board. You really need to do a little research depending on your situation. In Indiana, we charge $25 with the home inspection because we’re already there. A stand-alone inspection is $75.00. Our Kentucky prices differ a bit because we have to sub the service out to a third party. We only recommend companies we trust, though, and we work together with them to try and schedule our inspections at the same time for you.

Other companies in our area have ranged $0 – $125. Again, just be careful that there’s no conflict of interest. We don’t fix, we don’t repair, we don’t correct anything. We have no ulterior motive to tell you if there’s something wrong or that there’s an issue when there really isn’t.

Will I get a report after my termite inspection, and how long will it take for me to get it?

That’s another good question. We strive to deliver all of our reports at the same time, the day of inspection for any inspection that begins before 4:30 pm. Those starting at 4:30 or later may not arrive until the next day. This is to allow our inspector time to compile and proofread their reports before delivery. This has also been requested by multiple real estate agents to allow both you and them evening time with the family. No matter what, you should receive your report within 24 hours. Exceptions may apply for Kentucky inspections due to 3rd party cooperation. All efforts are made to schedule the inspection and report delivery as close together as possible.