When buying or selling the property, it is imperative to ensure that you employ the services of a professional firm to carry out a pre-purchase pest inspection and building inspections for the structural defect to avoid any costly problems in the future. Building inspection companies are in the business of providing buyers with peace of mind and security that their valuable purchase does not contain any hidden defects or pesky inhabitants.
Pre-Purchase Building and Pest Inspections for Gold Coast homes in particular (because of the threat of termites) will show the condition of the building at the time of purchase. After an initial survey of the property the building structures are thoroughly checked, methodically surveying all factors that contribute to structural integrity and safety. This is a thorough, fast, non-invasive process and the results are recorded in a report that will reflect the status of the building structures on the property clearly and accurately. This report provides a valuable tool when negotiating with a buyer or a seller as it shows what condition the building is in as well as any problems anticipated in the future.
An inspection by a qualified and experienced inspector will take between 30 – 60 minutes to complete, depending on the size of the building and the age and condition of the property. Knowing as much as possible about the condition of the property before purchasing can help you make a more informed decision when negotiating the price.
A pre-purchase property inspection will typically include the following:
• windows and doors open easily and don’t get stuck in the frames.
• damp or mould on walls, skirting boards and ceilings
• sagging ceilings
• buckling walls
• rot or damp under floorboards like acoustic flooring or carpets
• taps flow properly, and hot water comes through quickly
• a running cistern in the toilet and no sign blockages when flushed
• sturdy plumbing with no rust or damage to pipes
• hot water system size and age
• damp in wet areas.
• check light switches and fuse boxes to evaluate circuitry age
• check that the Earth Leakage Safety Switch is working
• check general state of the guttering, roof and drain pipes.
• check for major cracks in exterior walls or other defects.
• check for a home energy efficiency rating
• RCD and smoke alarm testing
A timber inspection will reveal previous as well as current pest activity, using advanced technology to help locate the presence of any pests such as termites or rodents. Advanced knowledge of any pest activity or previous damage from pest infestations can help you assess the true value of the property and avoid problems after you have settled in.
Invest in peace of mind regarding a proposed property for purchase before deciding to invest in the property itself by getting a pre-purchase pest and building inspection done professionally.
Termite chemical barriers are treated zones, where liquid termiticides (termite chemicals) provide termite protection around your property. Treated areas stop subterranean termites gaining access into your property.
To initiate the termite barrier, the process basically involves injecting a ‘termiticide’ in drilled holes roughly 150mm-200mm apart (through the concrete or tiled area surrounding the dwelling). The holes are then capped (re-sealed). This will provide a perimeter for termite protection, with the termite barrier effectively cordoning off ‘attack’.
Termidor Termite Protection
Our termiticide of choice is… Termidor. It is lethal to termites and highly effective, in that, the termite cannot detect its presence. As the termites move through treated soil, they come in contact with the Termidor product and without knowing it, they transfer the termiticide throughout the colony – eventually eliminating the entire colony.
Nemesis is an Australian termite bait system designed to attract and eliminate termite colonies in a safe non invasive way.
It uses an insect growth regulator(IGR), Chlorfluazuron, as the active constituent in the termite bait station. Active termites feed on the highly attractive bait food source & translocate the IGR to other members of the colony (at levels undetectable by those termites) until the colony collapses.
The Nemesis termite bait trap is a registered product under the requirements of legislation administered by the Australian Pesticides and Vetinary Medicines Authority.
The bait system uses a number of unique stations for inground & above ground interception of active termites. First, a professional pest manager will inspect your home for termites, and if they are found, or if the risk of possible activity is high, the Nemesis termite bait system will be recommended. If termites are found, Nemesis above ground stations are placed directly over the active areas – this engages the termites and results in faster colony elimination. Otherwise, Nemesis inground stations are deployed around the perimeter of your home. Termite attractive timber inserts are placed inside these external stations and are monitored on a regular basis for termite activity.
TERMITE BAIT SYSTEM & MONITORING
Is an innovative and proven approach to termite control
Is an effective solution that is less invasive or disruptive as a termite treatment process compared to traditional chemical methods
Is a visible method and the process is transparent, allowing for a co-operative approach to termite control with your chosen pest manager
Greatly reduces the risk to non-target insect or animal species, by specifically targeting termite colonies
Reduces the risk of environmental damage, especially compared with chemical termite treatment methods
Can be used either as a localised ternute treatment to a specific area of your home, or as a full installation to the perimeter
Can be applied to other structures on your property, such as: sheds, gazebos, decking or fences
Termite Bait System Costs
The Nemesis termite bait systemsare a competitive termite control method when compared to other more traditional means of prevention. The cost of any termite treatment required to obtain lasting termite control will be determined by a range of factors, including :
The size of your home
The extent of any existing termite infestation (and the location within your home)
The species of termite encountered
The pressure from termite nests within range of your home
The frequency of property inspections required by you
The system installation requirements (e.g. surface for monitoring station implementation)
These factors will be discussed with you prior to making any decision on a termite treatment solution.
Termidor is the first choice of pest control companies for subterranean termite control and now ant and general insect control. With its low odor and long lasting residual, Termidor is the pesticide of choice for tough termite control situations. Termidor is a low toxicity insecticide product that kills termites, ants and a variety of pests. It is mixed with water and applied to soil, building perimeters, wall voids and other areas where pests hide. Termidor is not to be used indoors, as a general surface spray, but can be applied under homes and buildings as a sub-slab injection, into wall voids as a foam application, or to posts, poles and wooden landscape ornamention for subterranean and drywood termite control.
The active ingredient in Termidor is Fipronyl and has shown to last over fourteen years in field research tests for subterranean termite control.
Termidor is unique. Only Termidor has the domino effect on termites and ants. Once termites and ants are exposed, they become infected and start to slowly die. Social insects such as termites and ants will interact with one another through feeding or grooming processes and infect each other for rapid control of entire termite colonies or nests. You can trust it to take care of the job with only 1-2 applications resulting in a huge savings in time and materials resulting from re-treatments with inferior products.
WHICH PESTS DOES TERMIDOR CONTROL?
Termidor SC (Suspended Concentrate) is a liquid formulation for the control of termites, including subterranean, Formosan, and drywood termites, carpenter ants, and nuisance ant species such as Argentine ants, big-headed ants, odorous house ants, pavement ants, etc.
PERIMETER PEST CONTROL
For years, the same non-repellent, undetectable technology that has made Termidor® the No.1 termite treatment, has also proven highly effective in controlling many species of nuisance ants. Now, Termidor is labelled for a broad range of other frequently encountered general pests, including: spiders, cockroaches, paper wasps, earwigs and millipedes.
One of the greatest hazards that any homeowner faces is termites. They cause more damage each year than fires, storms and earthquakes combined. If ignored, termites can actually threaten the structural integrity of your house.
Termites work silently and invisibly, sawing into your floor joists, cutting into your wall studs, hollowing out your woodwork and hiding the damage, until it’s too late.
Termites can easily find ways to enter your house, as they are small enough to gain entry into hidden areas of basements, crawl spaces, concrete slabs – through openings less than 1 mm.
Because of the high risk of termite infestation in most homes and the difficulty of keeping them out, it is essential to have an effective termite control solution. By using preventative termite treatment methods, you can protect your home from these pests.
Termites can build mud tubes across many metres of concrete, brick, block, treated wood, or metal termite shields – into even the upper floors of a structure. Termites eat wood from the inside out, often defying detection for years, while doing extensive damage to the wood and threatening the integrity of your home.
If you become aware of any of the signs of termite infestation, or if your neighbors have termites, call the termite treatment experts at Strategic Termite Solutions – immediately! During a termite inspection, our trained termite control experts will inspect inside and around your home, looking for areas that are vulnerable to termite infestation. Strategic Termite Solutions provides a termite control service for the Brisbane, Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast regions. We will examine areas where termites forage for moisture and food, giving special attention to conditions which are conducive to termite attack such as cracks, voids, and spaces where wiring and utilities pass through walls and slabs.
Our termite inspectors are well trained in termite behaviour. They know where to look for termites and can determine how they got there. We will recommend the best termite control method for your particular home or business, using the top rated products available today for Australian conditions, specific to your region.
With these advanced termite control, the termites actually spread the pesticide among their colony themselves, effectively exterminating the entire colony before they can begin feeding on your home. Not only will our treatment methods eradicate current termite problems, but they will protect your biggest investment for years to come.
The Termite Inspection Report covers areas inspected, inspection findings, high risk areas inaccessible to inspection and other important aspects in determining the recommended options.
The cost of a Termite Inspection Report for an average size home varies depending upon location, the style of construction and ease of inspection access.
Please ask for a FREE QUOTE – before the inspection.
Areas inspected include all accessible timbers in sub-floor (if accessible) roof void, interior, exterior, garden landscaping areas, fences in the immediate locality – within 50 metres of the building.
Specialised equipment may be used – moisture metre, microwave and thermal imaging cameras, Termatrac termite detector, ladders, overalls, torch, timber scribber or extendable dogger.
Termites are an ancient order of insects whose origins date back more than 100 million years to the Cretaceous period. Although they are commonly called “white ants”, the resemblance to ants is superficial and they are more closely related to cockroaches and in fact have been recently included into the cockroach order Blattodea.
Termites can be grouped into three basic categories: dampwood, drywood and subterranean. Dampwood termites generally live in damp rotting logs or rot pockets in dead or living trees. Drywood termites obtain water from the wood in which they live and have no contact with the soil, or with any other source of moisture. Subterranean termites are generally ground-dwelling or require contact with the soil or some constant source of moisture and are the main threat posed to timber in the built environment (timber-in-service).
Termites play a prominent part in the recycling of plant nutrients through the disintegration and decomposition of dead wood and plant debris. Their excavations alter the structure of trees and provide spaces which have become a necessary part of the habitat of many vertebrate species including bats, birds, reptiles and arboreal mammals. Many species of termite feed on materials such as grass. Only a handful are of economic importance to timber-in-service.
1. The Termite Colony
Termites are social insects, working and living together in groups (colonies). Each colony contains several types (castes) which differ in body shape and behavior, and each caste is specialised to perform different tasks. Three principal castes are recognised: workers, soldiers and reproductive (the primary king and queen and sometimes supplementary reproductive).
Figure 1 The subterranean termite Schedorhinotermes sp. Soldier on right with worker on left (Photo by Scott Kleinschmidt – BASF)
The worker caste dominates the colony numerically and is wingless, sterile and blind. The workers are aptly named because they build the nest and galleries, tend the eggs and young, gather food, and feed other castes incapable of feeding themselves. Older workers may predominate in activities outside the nest. The primitive termite family Mastotermitidae lacks a worker caste. Instead, the tasks of workers are performed by a worker-like caste (pseudergates), which may develop into other castes.
The soldier caste is the most distinctive and easiest from which to identify the species. The soldiers are distinguished from other castes by their heads which are heavily armoured and coloured. Like the workers they are wingless, sterile and blind. Because their mandibles are so modified or specialised, soldiers must be fed by the workers. The primary function of the soldiers is to defend the colony against predators such as ants.
The alate caste, the potential kings and queens of new colonies, possesses eyes, functional reproductive systems and wings. They usually swarm (leave the colony) in spring to early summer or late summer to early autumn, often through specially constructed exits. They normally swarm at dusk and may be attracted to lights at night. Alates do not fly strongly and, unless assisted by winds, their dispersal is limited.
Following swarming, alates shed their wings and each mated pair seeks out a suitable place to establish a new colony. The king alters little in shape, but the queen’s abdomen may become enormously distended with eggs until she is little more than a large, immobile egg laying machine. Some subterranean termite queens are capable of producing 2000 eggs per day. Mature termite colonies may number up to two million individuals and exist for as long as 50 years.
Termites build various types of nest. Some termites have a completely underground existence, apparently without a central nest. Examples include some species of Amitermes. Others build a central nest in the soil, or in dead or living trees. Many economically-important termites build nests of this type, notably Mastotermes darwiniensis and species of Coptotermes and Schedorhinotermes. Still other species, for example in the genera Microcerotermes (Figure 2) and Nasutitermes (Figure 3), attach their nest to a tree but maintain a soil connection via galleries running down the surface of the trunk. A termite mound is the most familiar form of termite nest.
Mounds are often of very distinctive form, and their size and shape vary from hardened, flat areas to the tall, columnar structures of the spinifex termite Nasutitermes triodiae in northern Australia, which may be more than 7 m high (Figure 4). Typically, each species builds a characteristic mound, although there may be geographical variation in the size and shape of the mound within species. In the mounds of Coptotermes (Figure 5) the outer wall is hard and built of soil and the inner region is generally composed of woody faecal material (carton) and soil.
3. Feeding Habits and Behaviour
Cellulose found in plants, is the basic food requirement of all termites, and all types of plant material can be damaged. Most termite species eat grass and other surface vegetation and have an important role in maintaining soil fertility. They recycle nutrients, in particular nitrogen which is essential for healthy plant growth. When termite mounds erode, the soil particles rich in nutrients such as calcium, magnesium and potassium are washed into the soil from the mound to become available for plant growth. Termite galleries improve soil structure, and assist water entry and storage in soil; surface rainwater runoff and subsequent soil erosion are thereby reduced by the galleries.
Some termites forage for food by means of subterranean galleries or covered runways, which extend from the central nest to food sources above or below ground. The gallery system of a single colony may be used to exploit food sources over as much as one hectare, with individual galleries extending up to 50 m in length for most species. In the case of the giant northern termite M. darwiniensis, individual galleries may extend as far as 100, 200 m. Apart from grass-eating species, which forage in the open; all termites remain within a closed system of galleries, devoid of light. The only exceptions are during a swarming flight, or when repair or new construction is occurring. The advantages to the termites of this closed system are twofold. They are protected from natural enemies such as ants, and they gain a measure of protection from temperature and humidity extremes. Termites have a thin external covering and have relatively little resistance to drying out.
4. Natural Enemies
The most important natural enemies of termites are predators of various kinds, especially ants. Winged reproductive emerging on their colonising flight are eaten in large numbers by lizards, snakes, frogs, insectivorous and omnivorous birds, ants and other predatory insects, especially dragonflies. Workers and soldiers of a wide range of species form an important part of the diet of the echidna, which has strong, long-clawed feet with which it damages mounds and subterranean galleries.
Although the coastal belt and northern parts of the country are generally regarded as high hazard areas for subterranean termite infestation, species which damage timber-in-service occur throughout mainland Australia. In practice, any structure containing wood is exposed to possible subterranean termite infestation whether in the business heart of a city, in the suburbs or out in the country, unless protective measures are taken.