Termites have struck fear into many home buyers but there are a few checks you can perform yourself to assist in buying a termite free home. Arming yourself with these handy hints, you will be ready to purchase stress free.

Determine prior termite history and get informed.

Ask the agent if the current owner has had any recent pest inspections performed on the property and if so, when. Australian standards recommend pest inspections be performed on properties at intervals not exceeding 12 months. Depending on conducive conditions and findings from the pest inspector, this will determine the recommended inspection interval which could be as low as 3 months. If they have had a recent inspection performed it is imperative, you get access to the pest inspection report that would have been completed. In this inspection report, it will outline if any damage was identified on the day of inspection and outline potential issues that could attract termites including moisture problems i.e leaky showers/inadequate drainage etc.

The report should also provide recommendations for any treatment requirements the home may need based on the findings and mention if the home has any up to date treatment in place. Pest inspections average at $260.00 and if it has already been completed recently, a further inspection “may” not be needed at this time. If you are unsure you can always give a HomeMasters Inspector a call and we will be happy to guide you and have a look at the report for you to provide expert advice. Bear in mind however, if you do rely on the report provided by the homeowner, you are relying on what could be dated information and by performing your own inspection, you can get a second up to date opinion. By combining your pest inspection with a building inspection, you will receive a pest inspection for half price so in most cases, it does pay to arrange your own in most circumstances.

As well as asking for the report, check the meter box for any prior termite treatments. When a termite treatment is completed. A notice will be placed in the electrical meter box stating what has been carried out to help prevent a termite attack on the home. It will also mention the life expectancy as well as any ongoing requirements to keep the home safe i.e. ongoing inspections.

Not all termite treatments are created equally, many different chemicals and methods are available. The company that treated the property will be listed on the notice also and they should be contacted for further advice and recommendations. If the treatment is now out of date, generally a re-treatment will be recommended and the costs to do so should be taken into consideration. Depending on the type of termite treatment required which we will determine for you on a pre purchase inspection, costs can vary from $800.00 all the way to $3500.00. So, ensure your budget is ready. It is important to note, that pest control companies require regular inspections as outlined by them to maintain any potential warranty they provide with their termite treatment service.

Schedule a Pre-Purchase Termite Inspection

Having an expert pest inspector check the home for you prior to purchase is always going to be the most beneficial way of getting all the facts with your new home. A good pest inspector will not only check for termites, but also advise you on issues that could attract termites or cause problems in the future. Most of the building and pest inspection companies are just that, inspections only. It is advised you use a reputable inspection company that also does pest control otherwise you may need to seek further advice from an independent licensed pest technician which when dealing with a 48 hour cooling off period can put pressure on you to make a “quick” decision without having all the facts. A pest manager will asses your treatment options and provide the best possible solution to ensure premium protection. The last thing you want to do, is rush one of the biggest decisions of your life.

Get ready to bargain for your home

If there is termite damage to the home and you are willing to take on the challenge of repairs, there is some potential benefits and rewards to be had. If the pest inspection comes back with termite damage, use it to bargain with the real estate agent on price. It can become a great negotiating tool. Of course, research will be required to ensure the damage it not to extensive and that a repair is realistically possible without overcapitalising and it falls within your budget and time line.

So there are some key points to help prevent buying a home that is termite infested, potentially costing you thousands to repair. We have the knowledge on all things termites and if you need any further advice, feel free to contact the team at HomeMasters building and pest inspections. If you are ready to schedule your pest inspection, contact us and we will provide a comprehensive report putting you in the know before it is too late.

There are two buyers hints to help prevent buying a termite infested home, potentially costing you thousands to repair. We have the knowledge on all things termites and if you need any further advice, feel free to contact the team at HomeMasters building and pest inspections and speak to an accredited pest technician or check out a pest inspection we completed in Woodcroft Adelaide HERE. We would love to help.

To help determine a prior Chemical treatment to the property, check for drill holes around the property as pictured. This is a clear indication that there has been termite prevention implemented.

Drill holes around the perimeter of the home

The termite management notice will be located in the meterbox. See an example below.

Example termite management notice
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