With a significant termite risk, Australian homes and properties are in constant danger of termite infestation. These infestations can be damaging and costly, as termites do their dirty work in our building structures. Fortunately, with proper inspections, treatment, and management, termites can be kept at bay and your property kept safe. But just how much of a threat are termites to your home? Let’s take a closer look.
Termites Wreaking Havoc
CSIRO research states that in high risk areas, 1 in 3 Australian homes are vulnerable to termite infestation. The map below indicates which regions of the country are most susceptible.
In Australia, the areas of greatest risk seem to be coastal, and particularly regions of the tropical north, where hot and humid conditions are the ideal breeding ground for termites.
Studies conducted by many different leading organisations report that not only are 1 in 3 homes vulnerable to termite attack, but that in fact 1 in 3 homes will be infested by termites. These statistics speak loud and clear: it’s vital that you take the proper precautions when it comes to fending off termites.
Termites on the Rampage
In Australia, there are over 350 species of termites, and nearly 2 dozen of these species can cause potential damage. The most pernicious of the termites in Australia are the formosan, or subterranean termites. These live in the soil in massive nests; their colonies sometimes number up to the millions. They feast incessantly on the wood in your home or surrounding structures, accessing it from under the ground. A virtually unseen beast, these termites can cause tremendous structural damage.
Every year, subterranean and other termites cause major damage to Australian homes and properties, approximating between $780 million and $1 billion according to recent reports from Archicentre.
When you calculate the rough costs of repairing this structural damage, it amounts to several thousand dollars. Extensive termite treatment can also become expensive if the infestation is not caught or stopped early on.
What Can Be Done?
With such harrowing statistics, it might seem hopeless. But risk of termites does not have to mean certain infestation. There are many important steps you can take to protect your home and to assess potential threat.
Prior to buying a new home, don’t forget to order a pre-purchase inspection. This vital step can ensure your prospective property is well-protected before purchase. If it isn’t, your termite control company can install barriers and treatments to dramatically lower your risk.
For any home or other property, its wise to invest in annual inspections. A professional can examine your home for signs of termite damage, reinforce current termite treatments, and continue to make sure your home is safe from these unwanted pests.
In between yearly inspections, make sure you are taking the proper precautions to lower your risk as much as possible. Keep any wood (such as firewood) covered and dry and as far away from your main home structure as possible. If you have wood fencing in your yard, have this treated for termites as well, as the presence of any wood will only draw the termites in. Keep an eye out for water leaks near your home, as these can cause the damp conditions which attract termites, and can also provide the perfect spot for termites to get into the structure of your home.
Although the risk of termites in Australia is great, you don’t have to be the victim. Taking the right steps toward prevention will keep you from suffering costly damage, and give you the peace of mind you deserve.