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Honey, Did You Remember To Send An Invitation To The Termites?

Honey, did you remember to send an invitation to the termites?

Having a house party? 

Let's say you are, oh, remodeling an old farmhouse.  It's listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and has a listing in both the local county and city.

The process has taken a long time and cost a lot of money.  You are so proud of this effort that you have invited every person who has had a hand in the house's restoration to a big party.

Including the termites!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wondering how will you know the termites have showed up to the party?

They will appreciate how this siding lets so much moisture against the house!  This is James Hardie siding - termite resistant.  They won't harm the James Hardie siding.

But they will get under it.  And behind it.  And inside it. 

Their job?  To consume cellulose and break it down into usable nutrients.

And they will begin quickly!  They will work 24/7/365, and on leap year.  They will be relentless and come in numbers you would not believe.  It will be a never-ending parade.

What are they looking for?

Wet wood!  Delicious, available, laid-out-in-a-fine-buffet, wet wood!  Like the wood above. 

Valhalla!

Mr. Rogers would say, "Can you spell 'yum yum' boys and girls?"

My recommendation:   installing siding is more than just installing siding!  It involves paying attention to everything, the whole picture, seeing things now and things that might happen in the future.  Everything!  Looking ahead is a Best Practice.  Believe me when I say the termites will not politely wait until you are finished with the project to begin.  They will not wait for your party!  Termites think they are the party!  Termites are party animals!

 

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 28 commentsJay Markanich • February 22 2014 04:12AM

Comments

Hi Jay,

Time and time again I hear from sellers who ask "Why should I have to seal up that small crack or hole in the wall". This post tells you why. Good information for a buyer or seller. Even the contractor that had their head in the clouds when doing this job.

Have a good day in Bristow my friend.

Best, Clint McKie

Posted by Clint Mckie, Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586 (Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections) over 4 years ago

This is truly an invitation Clint.  When will he find out?  Down the line when damage is significant.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

I love to see the crawlspace baited with wood debris. Talk about a smorgasbord for WDI's...

Posted by TeamCHI - Complete Home Inspections, Inc., Home Inspectons - Nashville, TN area - 615.661.029 (Complete Home Inspections, Inc.) over 4 years ago

At this point in the house there is a slab, just inside the front porch, Michael!  They are coming straight inside!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

And to think that an inspection by a qualified termite pro is going to cost about $50.

I wonder if they had a termite inspection prior to beginning the renovation??

Posted by Lenn Harley, Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland (Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate) over 4 years ago

No know Lenn!  Shoulda, coulda, woulda.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Why not just hold an open house giving them the directions to the home?  No wait a minute that is exactly what they did. 

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty AR LLC) over 4 years ago

That cable actually runs into the yard and under the mulch near a bush in front James.  Think of it as something like a neon sign!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Great point Jay; we aren't just putting up siding.I've seen many homes with vinyl siding and the owners are considering removing it. My thought is always, It was covered for a reason, you may not want to see what is under it.

Posted by Tom Arstingstall, General Contractor, Dry Rot, Water Damage Sacramento, El Dorado County - (916) 765-5366, General Contractor, Dry Rot and Water Damage (Dry Rot and Water Damage www.tromlerconstruction.com Mobile - 916-765-5366) over 4 years ago

Tom - once on an inspection I was able to peek under the new vinyl siding and saw they had covered up Lousiana Pacific stuff that was bad, bad, bad.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Nature doesnt look for houses but for food...Taking your house off the menu is what this post supports

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) over 4 years ago

Richie - I had a termite guy tell me once that if it isn't in the way, an old stump in the yard is a good thing because the termites are attracted to it and not to the house.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Jay, this is one of those, "what was he thinking?" problems. Oh, I guess he wasn't! BTW, love your sign in comment #8! Perfect.

Posted by Tom White, Franklin Homes Realty LLC, Franklin TN (Franklin Homes Realty LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.FranklinHomesRealty.com) over 4 years ago

Thanks Tom.  I would have put that sign in the post, but it may be copywrited.  And yes, he was not thinking.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

I have seen some house that were foreclosures in the Secretary hold for over 4 years and they had termites. In one case two sides of the home had to be removed, propped up and new framing done before the brick veneer was put back on. Those buggers are industrious. Can you say smorgasbord? I know you could.

Posted by Joe Pryor, REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties (The Virtual Real Estate Team) over 4 years ago

Every property at some point will get termites. Not if but when. Just have to do the best to invite them elsewhere.

Posted by Bill Reddington, Destin Florida Real Estate (Re/max Southern Realty) over 4 years ago

Jay -- You are so right calling them party animals. They don't know when to stop.... and they don't! until extermination does.

Posted by Barbara Altieri, REALTOR-Fairfield County CT Homes/Condos For Sale (RealtyQuest/Kinard Realty Group, Fairfield and New Haven County CT Real Estate) over 4 years ago

Joe - can you imagine Mr. Rogers suggesting the kids spell that?

Bill - that's probably not far from true.  In the deep south I understand that it is a 100% proposition.

You remind me of the movie "Animal House," Barbara!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

It is no party having termites crash your party.  They need to be sent away or better yet totally eliminated. 

Posted by Joan Whitebook, Consumer Focused Real Estate Services (BHG The Masiello Group) over 4 years ago

If possible Joan!  And don't create conditions that invite them!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Jay, I used to believe we don't have much 'inroads' of termites in New England! Not so true - they are party animals - be it Huston, TX or Boston, MA!

Posted by Praful Thakkar, Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale (LAER Realty Partners) over 4 years ago

Praful - my understanding is that they used to not be in the colder climates, but are there now.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Instant reblog! I am overdue for some termites. Have not had a failed test lately.

Posted by Cheryl Ritchie, Southern Maryland 301-980-7566 (RE/MAX Leading Edge www.GoldenResults.com) over 4 years ago

Thanks Cheryl.  You must not be sending out really nice invitations!  Maybe more colors would work.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

One of the inspectors that I work with regularly likes to say, "There are two types of homes:  homes that have termites, and homes that WILL have termites."

Posted by Tg Glazer - The Right Realtor® for the Right Results!, Westfield/Cranford, NJ area (Coldwell Banker, Westfield, NJ) over 4 years ago

That's one of those sayings that have been around a while Tg.  And it's true.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

Forget the termites, that siding is installed wrong per the manufacturer. 

Posted by James Quarello, Connecticut Home Inspector (JRV Home Inspection Services, LLC) over 4 years ago

Sí, Señor Jaime.  That was on the report to him, along with my commentary.  I also did send him a link to what it should be like, and how to find out if his "contractor" and crews are J.H. certified.  But them termites will be a coming.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 4 years ago

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