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Can Pests Harm My Home’s Value?

You’re getting ready to place your home on the market, and you’ve done everything you can think of to get it ready to sell. The furniture is clean, all personal effects have been put away, and the fresh coat of paint in the bathroom really brightens the space.

Suddenly, you hear a scratching sound. You look down, near the baseboards, and...what is that? Droppings? Oh no.

How Pests Affect Resale Value

Having pests or having had an infestation in the past doesn’t make your home unsellable. It does, however, impact the value of your home in various ways and in various places.

Exterior Value

Exterior damage is an eyesore, but other areas of your home can be just as affected.

Termite Damage

Laws vary from state to state but generally speaking, you should always disclose something like pest damage. Structural damages, like termite damage, can lower your home’s value by up to 20%, but many lenders require a termite inspection separate from other home inspections--so the damage will be found one way or another.

If you’ve had termite damage in the past but had your home treated, great! Make sure to disclose that as well and be prepared to show proof of treatment.

Landscaping

Landscaping can add to your home’s value, or it can detract from it. Features like a koi pond may seem like a great investment, but if it isn’t maintained, it can quickly become a swampy breeding ground for mosquitoes.

Older trees can add value to a home because of their beauty, but when affected by pests, they can become a liability. Tree limbs can break from rot or disease caused by pests such as oak wilt (caused by the nitidulid beetle).

Wooden deck

A new wooden deck or patio is one of the best investments you can make in terms of return on interest (ROI). But a poorly maintained deck with rotting or broken planks can (unsurprisingly) reduce the value of your home. It can create safety hazards as well as being an eyesore.

Termites chew through wood at an alarming rate, so if you think you may see any of these signs of termite damage, contact professional pest control services right away:

  • Mud tubes. These tubes typically appear near the foundation of your home and are made from termites’ saliva and feces.
  • Buckling wood. You may think you have water damage, but is it actually termite damage?
  • Maze-like patterns in wood. If your walls are starting to look like Pan’s Labyrinth, give us a call.
  • Musty smell. The smell of mildew or mold may indicate termites and not water damage.

Interior Value

Pests like termites and mosquitoes can cause chaos outside your home, but other pests can create havoc on your home’s interior.

Mice and Rats

Mice and rats have teeth that grow consistently, which is why they need to gnaw--it helps keep their teeth at a manageable level. Unfortunately, what mice and rats tend to choose to gnaw on are your walls and electrical wiring. Frayed electrical wiring is a major fire hazard, so homes with a history of rodent-related problems may be under a higher level of scrutiny.

Cockroaches

Many pests are drawn to your home by excessive moisture, but cockroaches are one of the most unsightly. If you’ve had problems with cockroaches in the past, you’ll want to make sure there’s no chance of a surprise reappearance when your home is on the market.

If you’re worried about cockroaches, mosquitoes, termites, rodents, or any other pests affecting your home’s value, it’s time to talk to the professionals.

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