Termite infestations are a serious issue in the Atlanta area year-round because of our warm, rainy climate. Unfortunately, they are often not detected until it is too late. Colonies of termites can live under homes for several years before they eventually make their way inside basements, crawl spaces, and concrete slabs through cracks and openings that are too small for humans to even see. However, these tiny critters are strong enough to chew through wood, flooring, and even sheet rock.
Because termites work from the inside out, they can do widespread damage for years before they are detected, and can even compromise the structural integrity of a home. According to the National Pest Management Association (NPMA), termites cost Americans more than $5 billion in damage every year. This is why termite inspections are becoming a routine and essential part of home inspections in Atlanta, GA.
What is a Termite Letter?
You may hear your realtor or lender mention a “termite letter” and wonder what it is. It is simply another term for the termite inspection report that is written after the inspection is completed. In Georgia, its full name is the “Official Georgia Wood Infestation Inspection Report.” The letter verifies whether or not evidence of wood-destroying insects, such as termites and beetles, were detected. It also documents any earth-to-wood contact and any previous termite treatments that were performed.
The Importance of a Termite Letter for a New Home
Some lenders require a termite lender. However, even if yours does not, it is still a highly valuable document to get before you close on a new home. This is probably the biggest investment you will ever make. It is necessary that you know that the property you’re buying is free of any kind of infestations.
What Goes into a Termite Inspection?
Termite inspectors look for visible evidence of wood-destroying organisms. These include termites, certain types of beetles, and wood-decaying fungus. Our home inspectors in Atlanta also identify any conditions in or around the home that could lead to future activity. Generally, this includes areas where the structure rests directly against the ground. This is often where termites and other pests get into the home.
What if Termites are Found?
Many people think that if termites are found, that means the home is not safe. However, most termite problems are treatable. Depending on the situation, the problem may just need to be mitigated along with any other necessary repairs before the sale goes through.
If a problem is found, our Atlanta home inspectors provide a quote for the treatment. If the buyer chooses to go through with the purchase, they and the seller then work out, through their representatives, how the cost will be covered. The seller may pay for it directly or deduct the cost from the price of the home so that the buyer can have the work done.
Bundle Your Home Inspection and Termite Letter
When you schedule your home inspection, we suggest that you bundle it with your termite letter as well as our radon testing and mold testing services. By bundling all of our inspections, you save money and have peace of mind knowing that your new home is safe and livable. If there turns out to be a serious problem, you want to know this BEFORE you make this investment so that you can either have the issues resolved or look elsewhere.
Our Atlanta home inspectors are ASHI certified and building-code certified by the International Construction Code (ICC). To find out more about our termite inspections and getting a termite letter, go to http://champia.com/residential/additional-services/article-atlanta-home-inspection-termite-inspection/.