Damage from termites is not covered under your home insurance

You are not insured for termite damage. Average repair bill around $10,000

In Perth, Western Australia, your home coming under termite attack is more likely than suffering a fire, flood or natural disaster. But surprisingly, home Insurance does not cover termites. With CSIRO reporting that 1 in 5 homes across Australia will suffer a termite attack at some point and with the average damage repair bill approaching $10,000, it’s important that homeowners take steps to protect their most valuable investment.

Pest inspection Perth: So what should you do to protect your home from termite damage?

Because home Insurance does not cover termites, homeowners should have a termite management plan for their property. There are 3 key elements to a termite management plan:

  • Eliminate conditions around the home that make it more attractive to termites
  • Have regular termite inspections
  • Install a termite management system

Making your home less attractive to termites

Eliminate sources of moisture

Termites have soft bodies and are prone to drying out – they need moisture!

If you can keep the area around and under your home dry, the chances of a termite attack are dramatically reduced. Improving drainage and fixing leaks should be carried out as soon as possible.

Eliminate food sources – wood and cardboard

Not surprisingly, termites love wood!

There’s nothing you can do about the wood in your home, but you can certainly remove wood items from the perimeter of your home and from the sub-floor (if you have one). Removing wood mulch from garden beds around the home and storing any firewood away from the home and off the ground are the main action steps. Avoid storing goods, especially in cardboard boxes (which termites also love!) in the sub-floor.

If you have just bought a property, your pre-purchase pest inspection will list the termite conducive conditions and any potential construction issues that need to be remedied. The same information is reported in annual termite inspections.

Remove fire wood

Remove fire wood from around your home

Keep subfloor areas clear and dry

Keep sub floor areas clear and dry

Wall stud eaten out

Wall stud eaten out

Regular termite inspections are your best insurance against termite damage!

Governments, building authorities and Australian Standards recommend that property owners have a professional termite inspection at least annually, and more frequently in areas of high termite pressure.

As termites live underground and are very secretive, their activity is hard to spot. Without regular termite inspections, termites may get into your home and cause significant damage before being detected. An experienced termite inspector using the latest detection equipment can pick up the subtle signs of termite activity.

What is a pest inspection? A comprehensive termite inspection will not only pick up signs of termite activity and termite damage in the building and surrounding property, but will inspect for conditions conducive to termite attack (such as elevated moisture) and construction issues that may allow termites to get in without being noticed.

If signs of termite activity are picked up during the inspection a suitable treatment program can be implemented.

Install a termite management system

Although termite inspections are a must, they don’t actually stop termite attacks. The smart choice is for homeowners is to install a termite management system around (and under) the property keeping in mind that damage from termites is not covered under your home insurance.

There are two types of termite management system; soil treatments and termite monitoring/baiting systems. Soil treatments involve the application of insecticide to the soil around the perimeter of the home (and in the sub-floor, if present). Termite monitoring and baiting systems involve the placement of bait stations in the soil around the property. The stations contain an attractive termite bait which intercepts the termites before they get to your house. They feed on the bait which contains a slow acting insecticide, taking it back to the nest and eliminating the colony.

Termite management systems such as these give homeowners great security, as insurance does not cover termites, but having one installed does not remove the need for annual termite inspections. These systems are designed to work in conjunction with construction elements of the building to prevent termites getting into the house without being noticed. Although unlikely, it would still be possible for termites to find their way into the building by building their mud tubes over or around the termite management system – which is why regular termite inspections are still required.

If you need a comprehensive, professional pest inspection in Perth please give us a call at Home Integrity or contact us here.


Calculating the Replacement Cost of Your Home

Calculating the Replacement Cost of Your Home

After having a pre-purchase building inspection completed in Perth WA, people will often ask for help in estimating the value of their established home, for home insurance purposes.

What the insurance form is probably asking of you is:  What is the replacement cost of the home?

How do I calculate the Replacement Cost of My Home?

There are a few different ways to calculate the cost to replace a home. All calculation methods have different results and varying degrees of accuracy.

Three commonly used methods are:

  1. Online home insurance calculators.
  2. Quantity Surveyor.
  3. Own calculations with the help of a builder.

Three calculators were used on a place in Scarborough, Perth WA, and surprisingly all calculations were found to be very similar. The reason for the similar results is the data calculators they use. Most calculators estimate the replacement cost of your home using information supplied by Cordell, Australia’s leading provider of building cost information.

The online calculators will prompt you for some basic information. i.e. size of home, number of bedrooms etc.

Where do I find online calculators to determine the Replacement Cost of My Home?

Below are 3 easy to use calculators.

If possible, choose a calculator where you feed in your specific address, not just a postcode. Check whether the calculator includes the cost of demolition and architects’ fees.

Another reasonably accurate, but expensive way to calculate the cost to rebuild is using the services of a qualified Quantity Surveyor.

They will be able to measure your home accurately, and apply current construction rates and other costs specific to your property, providing you with the most precise estimate.

The final way to calculate the cost to rebuild your home would be with a new home builder, and adding in a few more allowances. Note: This method is probably the least accurate.

The following home builders have display home pricing which includes square meter sizes, and specifications or finishes:

To use this method, select a home of similar size and specification. You may also need to add in some or all of the following allowances: Demolition, an allowance for BAL requirements (Bush Fire Attack Level) if close to bushland, retaining, architect design and approval fees. Also consider an allowance for accommodation whilst your new home is being built.

How do I get further information?

Best of luck, and if you need any further information there is a great article on the Choice website located here.

Checkout our Facebook and Instagram pages to keep up to date or visit our Website.