As the most invasive, destructive and financially crippling pest in the US, the termite is every homeowner’s worst nightmare – and with good reason, as $5 billion dollars is spent each year to repair the damage caused by termites.

So, it’s no wonder that you’ve decided to take the plunge and get a termite inspection – before the problem gets out of control, or simply as a precaution.

What parts of your home will a termite inspector check?

A termite inspector will check the interior of your home – including crawl spaces, walls, beams, sub-spaces and basements – as well as the perimeter of your home and the exterior, including garages, sheds and any outbuildings which are close by.

How long will a termite inspection typically take?

Depending on the size of your property – and the number of methods the termite control professionals use to carry out the inspection – a termite inspection can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 2 hours.

What do the inspectors look for?

When inspecting your home, the termite control professionals will be looking for a number of tell-tale signs which indicate a termite infestation. These include:

Wood damage.

Since termites built their homes in – and gain nutrition from – wood, it then follows that one of the biggest indicators of a termite infestation is wood damage. While wood damage in your home might not necessarily be because of termites, wood damaged by these invasive pests typically have long, deep, tube-like grooves, and there are likely to be traces of mud: this is what the termite inspectors will look for.

Mud tubes.

Composed of soil, wood and termite saliva, mud tubes are used by subterranean termites – the dominant species in Kansas and Missouri –  to connect their colonies below the ground, to the world above, where they are able to access food sources.

Mud tubes can be found on the brickwork around your home, on wooden structures, on sub floors, around sills and underneath porches, and inspectors will check all of these termite hotspots for signs of the little critters.

Mud in construction joints.

While mud tubes might not be visible around your property, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not there. Termites may burrow into cracks around your property and seal the entrance with mud in order to protect themselves from the elements.

Hollowed out areas in your walls.

During the inspection, you may notice the inspector tapping on your walls and beams. This is to listen for hollow spots – indicating the presence of tube systems built by termites – and to listen out for any termites that might be in the walls at that moment.

This strategic tapping is also likely to elicit a reaction from any termites that are present in the walls, as they bash themselves against the nearest surface to warn other termites of a potential threat.

How should you prepare for a termite inspection?

Since termites are attracted to dark, moist places, inspectors will need to access parts of your house which you might not necessarily have in regular use, such as your basement, crawl spaces – such as underneath your cupboards – your garage, and the perimeter of your property.

As such, these areas will need to be made accessible. For example, if your crawlspaces are used as overflow storage, it would be handy to relocate these items before your inspection, and if your garage is full to the brim with ‘stuff’, at least ensure that there are sufficient pathways for the termite control professionals to carry out the inspection.

How much does a termite inspection cost?

Though the cost of a termite inspection varies based on the size of the property – and also from company to company – you can expect to pay between $50 and $200 for a thorough termite inspection.

What happens after the inspection is complete?

After the inspection, you will be presented with a report, detailing the extent and location of the termite infestation (if there is one), including recommendations for what to do next: including suggestions for a termite treatment plan, and preventative measures to take for the future.

And, if worse comes to worst, how much can you expect to pay for termite treatment?

According to the 2020 cost guide from HomeAdvisor, termite treatments typically cost between $220 and $911, citing the national average as about $565.

This is dependent on the size of your property (HomeAdvisor stated that termite treatments cost around $3-16 per linear foot), the type of termite and the extent of the infestation, as well as the experience of the termite control company.

If you think you’re in need of a termite inspection – to ward against thousands in damage costs, if you leave a termite problem unchecked – and you live in Lee’s Summit, Missouri, or Overland Park, Kansas, call Mantis Pest Solutions to get a quote for your termite inspection today.