Termite Treatment Cost – Inspection and Professional vs. DIY
By: Abby Stone
If your house is infested with termites, treatment may seem frustrating and embarrassing. Termite treatment costs can play a big part in your decision on which company to hire. When treating termites and choosing a company, here are some questions you may have:
- What does a termite look like?
- Can termites cause any harm to me?
- What does an infestation look like?
- Which company should I hire?
- What is the best way to hire a termite company?
- What should I expect to happen at a treatment session
- How much does a termite inspection cost?
- How much does termite treatment cost?
- Are there hidden costs?
- Can I do it myself?
- Which DIY treatment is the best?
- What should I do if the termites come back?
- How do I keep termites from coming back?
Before you get treatment for termites, you may want to be sure you have a true infestation. There are a few things you should look for. The actual termite looks something similar to a flying ant. Most termites have wings at the adult stage of life. A difference between them is that termites have two body segments and ants have three. Termites also have longer wings. The subterranean termite is the #1 treated termite in the U.S.
Can termites cause any harm to me?
Termites pose a different kind of harm than say something like a bed bug. According to Orkin, termites are not able to bite humans. There is one kind of termite, called a soldier termite that has the ability to bite humans. However, they only bite humans if they are held incorrectly.
What does an infestation look like?
Even though most termites cannot cause any physical harm to your body, it is important that you seek treatment options. Signs of a termite infestation are sagging floors and ceilings, damaged wood, termite feces, and mud tunnels at the base of your home. If you are experiencing signs of an infestation, contact your local termite treatment company. Click here to see how Ohio State University depicts an infestation.
Which company should I hire?
There are thousands of companies to choose from when looking to hire a termite exterminator. Many times, larger companies charge more for the same service; however, their workers have been well educated and trained. Depending on the state, they may have a certification process where you can look up the company to see if they are legit.
It may be a good idea to try to find a company that is large enough to know what they are doing but small enough so you can still get a good deal.
What is the best way to hire a termite company?
Your first move should be to call them. Tell them your situation and you will set up a time for them to drop by. When they come they are going to do an examination. They will show you your results and suggest to you what they think is your best option. Check with other companies and compare their prices.
After you decide which company would be the best, they will schedule a time for you to receive the treatment. Before they perform the treatment, termitemd.com provides some great questions to ask:
1. What will your company do should termites return after treatment?
2. If I have a repair guarantee, do I have to pay a deductible?
3. All homes do not qualify for REPAIR guarantees, ask if your’s does.
4. After the initial one-year guarantee period, how many extra years can I renew my contract?
5. How much will my annual contract renewal cost be?
6. When my contract period is over, do I have to retreat my house again at my expense? Is there a discount for the next treatment?
7. Ask for an insurance certificate. Companies who don’t have any insurance are counting on you not asking.
8. If you are getting a bait treatment, ask how often their inspections will be performed, and the distance apart the stations will be placed.
After the company performs the treatment, they will return one year later for the annual inspection and give you an update. After that, you will receive and pay your bill.
What should I expect to happen at a treatment session and how much does a termite inspection cost?
Termite treatment can look different for everyone. Many exterminators will use a repellent to spray the base of your home. Exterminators may also use baits to kill the termites.
Bait is placed underground and the chemicals at each station are lethal to termites. The bait system is much easier to do if you are planning to do it yourself. Some treatment can last up to 5 years. It varies for each exterminator. It is suggested that you treat your whole house because many termites will find their way to the non-treated parts of your home.
How much does professional termite treatment cost?
According to Turner Pest Control, many home insurers do not cover the cost of termite treatment. Treatment can be expensive depending on where you live, what kind of termites you have, and how bad the infestation is. It can cost anywhere from $500-$4,000. The construction of your home can differ the cost as well. Termite treatment costs may be too expensive for many people but there are different do-it-yourself options.
Make sure if you do decide to hire a company, don’t choose solely based on price. You want to check reviews in the area and have a solid understanding of what you are getting for the money. Obviously there is great variance in the cost of termite treatment, but the level of service typically varies as well. No 2 infestations are exactly alike, so make sure you understand your quote.
If you are worried your home might become infested with termites you can get termite protection plan. A termite protection plan is a monthly fee that you pay that guarantees treatment if your house were to become infested with termites. So basically you are paying for ongoing protection/maintenance as opposed to a one time service.
Click here to see an example of such a plan from Terminix.
Are there hidden costs?
When looking into getting treatment for your home there are costs you should keep in mind when getting treatment.
1. Remember that you may need some repairs done to the construction of your home. It is important to remove and replace any wood that was damaged by termites. This can be expensive if you are not planning to do it yourself. This can cost several hundred dollars in repairs.
2. Check up inspections for your home. After receiving it is important to check your home every 5 years for termites. You want to make sure you catch another infestation early before it becomes a big issue. This should be another cost you should keep in mind. This can cost anywhere from $200-$400.
3. You also may want to get termite prevention treatment. It may be necessary to treat your house with a prevention spray to keep the termites away. Doityourself.com is a great website to look at for termite prevention.
Can I do it myself?
Yes, you can! While putting your trust in a professional is ideal, there are a number of things you can do yourself to kill termites. Treating termites yourself, is a much more cost efficient way to take care of the problem. There are many different products and treatments to choose from and it may seem overwhelming at first. Here are some suggestions:
Which DIY treatment is the best?
There are many different things to take into consideration when looking for the right termite treatment: money, efficiency, and safety of your pets and children.
Bait system: The bait system is the most common and easiest way, especially if you are planning to do it yourself. The bait system is a cylinder tube that has a wood and bait cartridge. You can place it in the ground by digging a hole with a posthole digger or a bulb shovel (a regular shovel will work too). Make sure you leave about 2-3 inches for drainage if it rains. Do not cover the top after placing it in the ground. After 2-3 months check the station. If it has termites in it you put in an active cartridge. After 2-4 weeks if the active cartridge is eaten then you start spot treatment. Talk to 2 or 3 professional termite exterminators to see what they suggest for your situation. Use the product that they suggest and treat it the same way.
According to the University of Kentucky, a great way to treat termites is with a pesticide called terminate. It costs a little under $100 for a box and it proves to be most effective to hire a professional.
Spray system: After you know that you have termites another method to treat with is spray. First, dig a trench a few inches deep and a few inches wide. Then, spray termiticide every 10 feet around the base of your home. You can also spray the termiticide in 12-inch holes in the concrete in front of doors. Spray until it the termiticide reaches the top of the hole. Many professional termite exterminators use termiticide.
What should I do if the termites come back?
If you hired a company to treat your termites, your first move should be to call the company back and tell them your problem. Most companies offer a one-year warranty protection plan. If you choose to treat the termites yourself, it would be best to contact a termite professional. You do not have to hire them, just get their personal opinion on the issue.
How do I keep termites from coming back?
There are many options to choose from when looking for a prevention plan. Many times professional companies offer this service to you. If you are looking to do it yourself, you can find yearly sprays to spray the base of your home to keep them away as well.
I hope these answers have helped you treat your termite infestation. Of course, it is always best to ask a trained professional before treating any termites yourself. It is also important to keep children and pets away from the treatment areas and to make sure you read all of the instructions on the back of the bottle before using any chemical.