From Ants to Zappers: A Comprehensive Guide to Pest Inspection and Prevention

Did you know that a house doesn’t go through just the casual issues over the year, and there are other issues that lurk within the walls – unanticipated? One such issue is pests. Around 124 million occupied units in the U.S. are reported to see roaches annually. Besides this, 14.8 million rodents (mice or rats) have been reported to be seen. This is huge!! So, if you’re planning to buy a house, then you must be aware of these issues beforehand. In fact, if you want to buy a house in Illinois, then you need to be extra cautious, as pests affect the state’s urban and rural areas.

You’re mistaken if you think that pests are just a “nasty” issue because it is clearly more than that. For example, termites can cause extensive damage to wooden structures – leading to structural issues. Rodents like mice and rats can contaminate food, which can result in health issues. Carpenter ants, on the other hand, can compromise the property’s integrity. These are just a few effects of having these unwanted guests in your home; there’s definitely more to this.

Therefore, if you want to handle the issue before it worsens, or if you don’t want to face the issue after buying a property, it is better to get a pest inspection. It is one of the ways you can get a guarantee that the property is safe and doesn’t come with surprises for you. In this blog, we will discuss pest inspections in detail and also talk about the prevention of pest issues. Lastly, we will also brief you about whether getting a pest inspection is better than a termite inspection before a home purchase.

How to Prepare for a Pest Inspection?

Coordinate with the Seller and Inspector

The very first thing you need to do is coordinate with the seller and the inspector. One needs to give you access to the property, and the other needs to look for pest issues. To have everyone on board, you may schedule the inspection at a convenient time for all parties. Also, make sure that the seller gives access to all the areas of the property, including:

  • Attics
  • Basements
  • Garages
  • Outbuildings

You can also have the seller on the property during the inspection so that if any of the areas are locked or obstructed, they can help you with that.

Identify Areas of Concern

Before starting off with the pest inspection, you can identify the areas of concern on your own. You can conduct your own visual inspection of the property. When inspecting, you should look for signs of pest activity like the following:

  • Dropping
  • Gnaw marks
  • Nests
  • Damaged wood

Most importantly, pay particular attention to the corners and hidden areas of attic and basements, as this is where these nasty intruders often hide. You can either write the areas of concern or take photographs so that once the inspector is there, you can discuss these with them.

Prepare Questions for the Inspector

You can also prepare questions for the inspector to ensure that everything happens smoothly and you understand the pest inspection. Before the inspection, you can create a list of questions you can ask from the inspections. Remember, you don’t ONLY have to stick to these questions; if you’re curious about something else, you can ask them as well.

Here are some of the questions to give you an idea about what you can ask the inspector:

  1. What types of pests are most common in this area?
  2. What specific signs of pest activity will you be looking for during the inspection?
  3. How thorough is the inspection process, and which areas of the property will you examine?
  4. If pests are found, what treatment options do you recommend, and what are the estimated costs?
  5. Are there any preventive measures we can take to minimize future pest problems? By asking these questions, you can better understand the potential pest risks and the steps needed to address them.

What Are the Pest Inspection Methods?

Visual Inspection

The basic method of a pest inspection is simply looking out for them with “trained” eyes. This involves checking for them on both the exterior and interior of the property. Inspectors can check for the signs of pest activity in the building’s structure and analyze different hidden areas where pests often hide.

Thermal Imaging

Another method for pest inspection is thermal imaging, which uses infrared cameras to detect temperature variations within a property. Now, if the pests are very hidden, this method is highly effective. In fact, it is also an effective method to identify termite colonies or rodent nests, as these are not visible to the naked eye. By capturing thermal images, inspectors can pinpoint areas where pests generate heat or where structural anomalies indicate their presence.

Moisture Meters

Moisture gives the pests a perfect environment in which to thrive, and this is why moisture meters are important to measure the moisture content of various materials within a property. By detecting moisture levels in wood, drywall, insulation, and other building materials, inspectors can identify areas that are susceptible to pest infestations. High moisture levels not only promote pest activity but also indicate potential water leaks or inadequate ventilation that can lead to structural damage over time.

Preventative Measures for Pests

Seal Entry Points

Inspect and seal any cracks, gaps, or openings around doors, windows, pipes, and utility lines with caulk or weather stripping. This prevents pests like insects and rodents from entering the building and establishing nests or colonies indoors.

Maintain Cleanliness

Keep the property clean by regularly cleaning up spills, crumbs, and food debris. Store food in sealed containers and promptly dispose of garbage in tightly sealed bins to avoid attracting pests such as ants, cockroaches, and rodents.

Reduce Moisture

Fix any leaks in plumbing, roofs, and windows to reduce moisture buildup, which attracts pests like termites, mosquitoes, and mold. Ensure proper ventilation in bathrooms, kitchens, and basements to discourage pests that thrive in humid environments.

Should You Choose a Pest Inspection or Termite Inspection for Home Purchase?

If you ask us, then we would definitely recommend getting a pest inspection as it provides a road assessment of various pests, including termites. However, a termite inspection only targets wood-destroying organisms like termites, wood-boring beetles, and carpenter ants. So, if you’re deciding to buy a property, then you must cater to a broader approach. This will help you decide better and know whether the property is worth buying. But you can still discuss this with a professional pest control expert or real estate agent. These professionals can determine the most appropriate inspection based on your prospective property’s location, age, and any disclosed issues.If you choose to go with a pest inspection, then you can reach out to The BrickKicker for expert pest inspection services. You can trust our certified inspectors to provide comprehensive assessments, detailed reports, and expert advice tailored to your needs. Contact us today to schedule your pest inspection and safeguard your home against pests. Your satisfaction and comfort are our priority at The BrickKicker!