How Do Termites Damage Homes?
Before we bash termites, let’s give them their due. They are an essential part of nature’s puzzle: they feed primarily on wood and break down organic debris (e.g. fallen trees). In doing so, they add nutrients to the soil. This only becomes a problem when they decide to feast on our homes. In severe infestations, termites can compromise the integrity and safety of a structure.
It can be difficult to spot termite damage until they’ve made your home an all-you-can-eat buffet. But you may notice swollen floors and/or ceilings, buckling wood, or areas that look like they’ve been damaged by water (the appearance is quite similar). You may also notice a moldy or mildew smell.
So, you have termites. What does this mean for your home’s resale value?
A record of termite infestation can reduce your resale value - even if the problem has been controlled. According to many experts, you may take a 20% hit in terms of your market value or asking price. This is understandable as these pests can cause extensive structural damage.
You are required to disclose the fact that you have had a termite infestation to potential buyers. It’s the law, and it puts you at a disadvantage when it comes to negotiating a price. It will also deter some prospective buyers.
What If You’ve Had a Termite Problem?
If you have not treated the problem, you can expect your home’s value to plummet. The best course of action is to call a professional pest management service as soon as you detect signs of an infestation.
If you’ve treated the infestation, you probably will still see lower offers. To counteract this, get a termite inspection before you put your house on the market. Make sure it is clear of any termite signs. You must disclose any previous termite reports, so include your most recent inspection with this package. Also, mention whether treatment guarantees will transfer to the buyer.
The good news is that a pest infestation does not necessarily increase the chances of a future problem. This is especially true if your treatment included preventative measures (e.g. installation of protective barriers).
So, yes, you must tell prospective buyers of any termite troubles. And, yes, they will likely use it as a bargaining chip to get you to lower the price. Realistically, you may have to come down on your price a bit (depending on the market, your neighborhood, and other factors).
Rid-a-Bug Can Help
Whether you plan on selling or keeping your home, it is critical that you act immediately when you notice signs of a termite infestation. If you do, contact Rid-a-Bug. We will treat the area aggressively with Termidor: the beauty of this option is that the termites spread the treatment throughout the colonies themselves. This allows it to infiltrate the nest and provide an effective, fast solution. Better yet, give us a call and we can help prevent termite invasions before they start.
We know you want to maximize the value of your home - whether you sell or not. Contact our expert team for help.