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Sleep tight…don’t let the Termites bite…

The other day I was in our small bathroom when I noticed the trim looked funny. It was all bubbled up like maybe there was water damage. I pulled some of the paint away and noticed that the wood beneath the paint was gone. As I looked closer, I saw that it was the whole length of the trim and the trim outside the door and the trim to the garage door. All of the wood had been what looked like decomposing, so I thought maybe water damage but upon looking closer something was eating the wood. My stomach dropped.

Americans spend $5 billion annually to control termites and repair their damage. The average repair can be from $1000 to $6000+. Termites are attracted to moisture. They like leaky pipes and improper drainage as that can make the wood softer to eat. My small bath, where I discovered the damage, has a leaky toilet and poor airflow making it paradise for termites. It was already on the list to renovate but has recently moved to the top of the list. The average colony size is 60,000 to 1 million with workers living 1 to 2 years and queens living over a decade. The average colony can eat a foot of a 2x4 in 6 months.

Most termite repair also involves additional costs besides repair and treatment, which can be thousands of dollars themselves. You also have to clean your ducts after you treat for termites because they are good breeding grounds for them and because fumigation gases can linger in your ducts. This can cost an average $270. You also may need a structural engineer to make sure your home is still structurally sound and that it won’t fall down around you.

After doing some research and freaking myself out, I scheduled an appointment with the experts at Terminix. They came out two days later and evaluated the house. They were inside and outside and in the crawlspace. When the rep came back in, I braced myself. The verdict: no sign of an active termite colony. There was, however, signs of previous termite treatment. The rep felt that the damage was old and that there was a previous termite problem. Previous, not current. Thank you, Jesus!

He did recommend prevention services for which we signed up. Better safe than sorry. The funny part of all of this is that a couple weeks earlier we had a yellow jacket nest in our wall and had to treat that, so now we are signed up for 2 different monthly pest control services. Lucky us!

Anyways, be aware of the signs and make sure the termites don’t sneak up on you!

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