Termites cause billions of dollars of damage annually in the United States and in many cases the damage they cause goes undetected in areas behind walls, in the crawlspace or in the attic.
This article provides tips for choosing a pest control company, choosing a termite or wood destroying organism (WDO) contract and termite prevention measures to take around your home. Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services recommends that you hire a licensed pest control company for termite protection around your home. You can find out if a company is licensed in Florida by using the Pest Control Database Search on the department’s website. You can also check to find out how many complaints have been filed against a particular company by using the Business Complaint Lookup tool on the department’s Consumer Resources page.
When you receive termite treatment or protection from a licensed pest control company you will be issued a WDO contract. There are three types of WDO contracts: spot or one-time treatment, retreat only and retreat and repair. Every company will have its own contract, coverage and conditions that could void the contract. Make sure to read the entire contract and fully understand it before signing. It is important to find out what termite species are covered, what structures on your property are included and the duration of the coverage. In addition, you will want to find out what conducive conditions (or termite attracting conditions) could void your contract.
Even if you have hired a pest control company, you must also do your part to protect your home from termites. Here are a few simple tips:
• Reduce moisture on and around your home. Moisture is a conducive condition
for termites and can include leaking exterior faucets and AC drain lines.
• Keep plant material and mulch away from your home foundation.
• Home siding material should not make direct contact with soil against foundation.
• Repair cracks and leaks around your home and roof.
• If you have a termite control treatment made to the soil around your home, avoid disturbing the treated soil along the foundation.
This information was taken from the March 2021 Florida Consumer Newsletter. For more information and tips visit our Termites page at www.FDACS.gov.