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Written by Fernando Munoz
on April 21, 2020

Old homes can come with a certain amount of charm and character. You can find unique features in old homes that simply are not present in those that are newer. For many people, this is an attractive element of owning and older home. Unfortunately, older homes can also be more susceptible to issues than those that are newer. Building standards and materials were often different at the time older homes were built. And, time takes a toll on the structure of any home or building – no matter how well built. Termites are one of the issues that you are at risk of finding in an older home. There are a number of reasons why your older home may be at an increased risk for developing a termite infestation.

Structural wood untreated for termites

Modern building codes in most areas throughout the US require that the structural wood have some type of protection against termites. The wood can be treated so that it is less susceptible to an infestation. This treatment is not a permanent solution for protecting against termites but it does help. Most older homes were not built with that type of protection. And, even if they were, the effectiveness against termites would be long gone. The untreated structural wood of older homes makes it easier for termites to infest. 

Previous termite infestations

It is not uncommon to learn that an older house has experienced problems with termites in the past. When you have an initial termite inspection, the inspector will let you know if there are signs of previous termite activity. Signs of a previous infestation means that at some point your home had everything termites needed to survive – and that could still be the case.

Longer period of time for swarmers to find property

All of the elements will do damage to a property over time without proper protection. The simple fact that your home has been in existence for a long time means that swarmers have had many opportunities to find the property and start a new colony.

Termite damage may be attributed to other issues common for older homes

Older homes can be at a higher risk for developing a severe termite infestation because termite damage may be attributed to other issues that are common for older homes. For example, wood rot is something you may see around windows and doors when you buy an older home. Do you know how to tell the difference between dry rot and termite activity? If not, you could easily assume you are looking at dry rot when you are actually looking at termite damage.

A home that is fifty years old is at a higher risk for developing issues with termites when compared to one that was finished yesterday. That is probably not a big shock. When you decided to purchase and older home you decided the challenges that come with it are worth the effort. Fortunately, termite protection can be done with a minimal investment of time from you when you choose to work with a pro.

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