Few things can be as horrible as coming home to the realization that you have a serious termite infestation. It’s one of those subtle infestations that have a way of manifesting themselves all at once; the pale coloration of wood that has given way to a colony of creepy crawlies. Termites can happen to anyone but most often to those older houses that used actual real wood rather than the synthetic wood generally used in most homes and apartments, especially in New York. So common is termite control in New York City that every home has to be inspected before being sold due to the virulent presence of termites. With so many homes reaching 100 years or older, the soft wood within is the perfect habitat for termites looking to nest during the winter months. Once they’re within, it’s almost impossible to be rid of them without professional help.
I made this mistake. Having purchased an older home that hadn’t been inspected for a couple of years, I wasn’t surprised when the pre-sale inspection returned a positive for termites. With the typical masculine arrogance of believing that I can do anything on my own, I decided to take on this problem mano e mano; me vs. the termites. What could go wrong? After a month of trying every single consumer product that I could find including industrial strength fogging toxins, they beat me. All I had accomplished in that month was to allow the infestation to grow beyond my control. Calling the pest control professionals resulted in having the home condemned until it was declared free of termites and safe to live in. So much of the wood had to be replaced in the home that I ended up having to pay nearly double in what the market price of the house had been listed for.