After buying a home, homeowners should consider scheduling a professional inspection annually, or at least once every 3-5 years, according to the American Society of Home Inspectors. Also, keep the following termite prevention tips in mind:
- Keep it dry: Repair leaking faucets, water pipes and AC units which are on the outside of the home. Keep basements, attics and crawl spaces well ventilated and dry. Direct water away from your house through properly functioning downspouts, gutters and splash blocks.
- Avoid providing harborage: Store firewood at least 20 feet away from the house and 5 inches off the ground. Keep mulch at least 15 inches from the foundation.
- Know the signs: Routinely inspect the foundation of your home for signs of mud tubes (used by termites to reach a food source), cracked or bubbling paint and wood that sounds hollow when tapped. Monitor all exterior areas of wood, including windows, doorframes and skirting boards for any noticeable changes.
A home is often the single largest investment a person will ever make. Homebuyers should arm themselves with as much information as possible about the existing home so they can make informed decisions for their families.