Termites are staging a revolution in Atlanta. For the second year in a row, according to sources, Atlanta is in the top ten of the nation’s ranking of termite-infested cities, coming in at number eight in a recent list. That’s up only slightly from Atlanta’s 2013 ranking as the nation’s number one.
Why Termites Spell Trouble
Although termites are tiny, their damage is vast. Termites are one of the biggest contributors to home destruction every year – and that amount continues to skyrocket. U.S. homeowners spend an estimated $5 billion dollars a year to fight back against termites, and all too often, homeowners won’t usually realize there’s a termite problem until considerable damage has been done (http://www.trulynolen.com/termite-control/). According to sources, Georgia homeowners are spending over $200 million dollars annually to combat these destructive critters. As most Georgia homeowner’s insurances don’t cover termite damage, preventing termite infestations with annual inspections is crucial to the safety of your home.
Subterranean Termites and…Possible Rise of the Super Termites?
While other kinds of termites may cause considerable issues to Atlanta homes, the eastern subterranean termite is one of the most problematic termites. As their name suggests, subterranean termites need moisture from the soil to survive, and they do so by creating underground communities that build moisture tubes leading from their safe underground haven to a lucrative food source – your home, woodpile, or nearby trees on your property. Subterranean termites are the cause of major structural damage, and their colonies are huge, home to several hundred thousand termites – which may cost you thousands of dollars in repairs and structural issues.
Another concern is the possible rise of what some news outlets are calling the “super termite” – and no, we’re not making that up. The “super termite” is a hybrid species of termite that may prove twice as structurally and financially devastating as its predecessor. While this possibility is an extreme example, it illustrates the potential adverse effects of a hybrid termite and shows the intense need to manage existing infestations.
Fighting Back Against Termites
Take steps to prevent termite infestation by trimming trees and shrubs so that branches or wood do not touch the structure. As termites are attracted to wood, move any debris or firewood a safe distance away from the house, minimizing any contact that wood has with the soil around your home. Termites are also attracted to moisture, so use downspouts or gutters to prevent water from collecting near the foundation of your home. Termites of all kinds can slip through the cracks of a home, so seal any small openings with grout or cement. Are wooden structures blistering or exhibiting dark patches? Is there evidence of mud tunneling? These may be signs of an active infestation.
Clearly, termites in Atlanta are a major problem. Termites can cause thousands upon thousands of dollars in structural damage, so homeowners would be well advised to contact professional exterminators in addition to following these preventative tips. Considering that most home insurance policies don’t protect against these destructive critters, the most efficient way to protect your property and peace of mind is to employ a trusted and experienced pest control company. Truly Nolen Atlanta can safeguard your home from termites, call 678-561-2847 for a termite inspection.