Termites, and ants, and mice, oh MY!


  #1  
Old 11-16-04, 08:45 AM
A
Aya
Aya is offline
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 23
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Termites, and ants, and mice, oh MY!

The fiance and I are planning on buying our first home, which we plan on actually making our only home (unless we someday get rich enough to buy a vacation one;-). Our inspection turned out to be rather intimidating, but we still want to go through with the purchace. The house is just more of a fixer-upper than we originally wanted, but it's in a great area that we wouldn't be able to get into otherwise. To sum up the inspection, the inspector basically said that the house was structurally sound, but that it needed updating. A lot of updating in my opinion, and a good deal of it needs to be done asap. One priority is pest extermination/prevention.

The house had been empty for 2 years, and the seller had not lived in it since he was a kid (was selling the parents' house), so I am concerned about what may be living there that the pest inspector may not have picked up on.

Termites: The pest inspector said that he could tell the house had been treated for termites in the past and that if the treatment wasn't still under warranty, it should be treated again. I don't think the seller is going to know when it was treated, since it wasn't his house (he doesn't even know exactly how old the roof is). The regular building inspector, however, said that he couldn't find any evidence of termites or damage caused by them at all (and he appeared to be very thorough, especially poking around with a stick in the basement).

Carpenter Ants: Dead carpenter ants were also found, mostly stuck to some sort of clear sticky goo that had been put on the floor in various places. Any idea what this is? We plan to clean it up good, but we have a cat and are concerned that she may find some we missed, eat it, and be poisoned. The pest guy said that it could have just been some sort of corn surup home remedy, which means our cat will definitely want to eat it.

Mice: Found mice droppings and pine cone debris in an unused shower stall in the second bathroom, which we planned on gutting anyway, although not within the next year. The shower drain seems to be completely clogged too - could mice have built a nest in it? I think mouse droppings were found in other areas as well. We plan on either combining mouse extermination in with the bug one, or just using traps on our own, since that's all the pest inspector said he would do (but he would collect the traps for us too).

The pest inspector gave us a quote of over $800 to treat all three pests, but we plan on getting other quotes elsewhere, especially since I've read that you shouldn't let the guy who initially inspects the place do the extermination.

We are going to ask the selller to pay for the extermination, since they must have known that the termites and ants were problems before. The selling agent told our realtor that the mouse droppings were old and there isn't a problem with them anymore. But my reasoning is that if they place has been unlived in for 2 years, how would they know the mice are gone? We're concerend that they won't pay for the extermination since there was no actual sign of a current live pest infestation.

Sorry for the long message, I guess I just wanted to know if $800 sounded reasonable for extermination of all three pests, so I have something to compare the other estimates to. Also, is there any way to know for sure if any of these problems are erradicated after extermination so that I can sleep at night?
 
  #2  
Old 11-17-04, 02:08 AM
T
Member
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: USA
Posts: 15,815
Likes: 0
Received 1 Like on 1 Post
Pest treatments

Costs of exterminators tends to vary from area to area and getting another bid or two might tell you if your estimate was reasonable. Most tend to be fairly competitive and pretty much in line with each other. Having the house inspected and treated for termites, if required, is in order. Maintain the contract and annual inspection. Remember, exterminators can only inspect what they see and can access. They do not have x-ray vision. They look for evidence where they can see it.

Make sure either you or your exterminator check the home for all possible entries for mice and other pests and seal these. Exclusion is the best control for household pests. Whether mice are currently present or not, the entries still exist and should be sealed to prevent their return.

The sticky goo for carpenter ants could have been ant bait. It is doubtful that you will find it anywhere else except the obvious places that you see it. It should clean up easily.

Mice are not apt to build a nest in a shower drain when there are many more accommodating places within a structure. The shower drain is probably just clogged with the usual hair and scum.
 
  #3  
Old 11-17-04, 07:48 AM
A
Aya
Aya is offline
Member
Thread Starter
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 23
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Thanks for the response!

That shower doesn't look like it's been used for about 20 years - I'd hate to think of what a clogg of 20-year old hair and scum must look like!
 
 

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
 
Ask a Question
Question Title:
Description:
Your question will be posted in: