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Inspecting for Insects that Cause Home Damage

There are a few different types of insects that once inside your home can create a serious amount of damage. Some create so much damage that they begin to weaken the structural integrity of the wood holding up your home. Adding a wood destroying insect inspection can help you to discover if these insects are present in a home.

If these types of insects are found within a home you are interested in purchasing and have made an offer on you can use the report as leverage to negotiate the cost of treatment and repairs, which could save you hundreds on your new home purchase.

How much does a wood destroying insect inspection generally cost?

The average cost for this inspection add on is about $90 in addition to the general inspection for your potential home. All of the findings of wood destroying insect inspection will be included in the home inspection report along with the photos, location of the issue observed, and an additional pest inspection form, NPMA-33, is filled out.

What if wood destroying insects are found in the home or damage is located from these types of insects?

If these types of insects or any damage from them are found during an inspection, an inspector can help to advise what steps will be needed to take next to remedy the issues. Each type of insect destroys wood in a different manner and not all damage is structurally threatening, but some can be. Not all signs or indications may be of active insect infestations, your inspector can help to clarify if treatment or action is really needed.

Common pests and insects that are found during wood insect inspections

  • Termites

Termites are often most though of when it comes to wood damaging insects, and our thought of as the most damaging insects to wood. The presence of termites is hard to notice and they are usually found once significant damage has been done. As termites feed on wood, they weaken buildings causing issues with house framing that can lead to costly repairs or even a collapse in the home. Since termites work inside the wood it can be years before they are discovered.

Most often the first signs of a termite infestation is the presence of swarming termites around a window or near an indoor light. If termites are discovered inside the house it is almost always because the home has been infested. Other signs of termites are wings on window sills or in cobwebs. Another obvious sign of insects is tunnels constructed through soil or wood and debris. Most often wood damage is not found as a first sign of termites.

  • Carpenter Ants

These are large ants that can range from ¼ inch to ½ inch in size. Most often carpenter ants are black, but some may be brown or red, or even have a yellowish color. Carpenter ants build nests and dig out tunnels through wood that weaken it from the inside. These large ants do not eat wood like termites do, but they do chew it and leave sawdust behind. A long-term carpenter ant infestation could lead to several colonies and a large structural damage problem in a home. These ants like to build their nest in damp homes with moisture issues. Decks and poorly stored firewood are favorite spots for carpenter ants as are unsealed openings on the exterior of the home which are common entry points.

  • Powder Post Beetles

This name can refer to several different kinds of wood infesting beetles. The damage produced by these types of beetles can be small round holes about the size of a pencil lead. The first sign of an infestation is usually a small amount of powder called Frass that appears in or around a piece of wood attacked by a beetle larvae. The easiest way to treat this is to remove and replace the infested wood, if this is left unattended it could reinfest the wood and maybe even lead to structural damage. Often people bring beetles into their home without even realizing it inside tools or imported wood decorations. Bamboo is a common source of these types of beetles. It is also common for infestations to occur from using old lumber that has been recycled from another project.

For a better peace of mind it is well worth the cost of a wood destroying insect inspection on a home you are about to purchase. For more information on professional inspection services in the Champaign area please contact us at any time.

 To hire an inspector in Champaign to help locate water damage and other issues in homes for sale please contact us any time. If you are looking for a reputable home inspector in Champaign or surrounding areas? Do you need a reputable home inspector in Champaign? Please contact us anytime we are highly trained and knowledgeable and will give you the best insight into your potential home purchase.  

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