I have talked often about things potential buyers need to keep an eye out for, but one thing which has not been discussed here much is the importance of avoiding termites and other wood boring pests. There are a few reasons why these pests in particular are dangerous to homeowners.

First, damages caused by termites and other pests are often not covered by homeowners insurance. This means that you could one day discover that your house needs tens of thousands of dollars worth of work in order to be structurally safe, but your insurance wont pay a dime.

Additionally, spotting termites and termite damage can be difficult. While some damage can be visible, there can often be cases where they are almost impossible to detect without proper training and tools. This means that while visible damage is a good sign that there are termites, a lack of visible damage does not indicate a lack of termites. If you are seriously considering a property, do your own inspection to look for termite damage, but also don’t forget to hire a professional. A professional pest inspector is your best bet, and this can be done in addition to the normal inspection.

But what if termites are found? If you do end up finding damage, it does not mean that you will have to give up on your plans to buy the house. If there is a moderate amount of damage, the current owner may agree to doing repairs before selling or lowering the price of the property. Just make sure that the lowered cost is enough that you will still be happy paying for damages on top of the purchase. Follow up, and make sure that the work has been done. Demand records and proof.

Finally, as a homeowner, you should make sure that your property is not being damaged. Keep your property sealed off, avoid storing wood next to the house, and inspect areas that are visible for signs of termites. Finally, every few years you should hire a professional. If termites are ever found, act immediately. It will not get cheaper to deal with the problem, and every day they live will mean more repair work which needs to be done. Eventually, they can make a house structurally unsound and dangerous to live within. If you suspect that you might have an infestation, act immediately.