Termite Protection in New Construction

Having a new home built is part of the American dream, and customizing the details to fit the perfect home you have been building in your mind is a fun and creative experience.  Your options are endless.  You can make rooms larger, add in closet space, change the cabinet finish, upgrade to stainless steel appliances, install a Jacuzzi tub, or have your bathroom equipped with a rainfall LED shower head.
Termite routesWith all the pretty, fancy and expensive upgrades, it is easy for homeowners to neglect to consider whether or not their home will be built with termite resistant strategies in mind.  Termites cause an estimated $11 Billion in damages annually, and Richmond has its fair share of that damage.  If your only two options were to upgrade the appliances, or have termite resistant strategies implemented, I would recommend stopping the termites every time. Unlike appliances which can be upgraded later, termite resistant strategies are best implemented during the construction phase of the home.

termite shield

The foundation of termite resistant construction is creating a barrier between the foundation, and the wood components that termites snack on. Termites travel up pipes, columns, foundation walls, and anything in contact with the ground, to make their way to the abundance of delicious cellulose found in your home. To stop them, builders install an array of plastic and metal shields on these components. You can see an example of this in the photo on the right.

While these techniques are not termite proof, they substantially lower your chance for termite damage. During a Chesterfield home inspection, I was able to observe a termite shield that was very effective. In the photo below, you can see termite tubes that hit a dead end at the shield.  The tubes are dry and crumbling which indicates that the termites may have gone underground for the winter, but may return when the weather warms up. Luckily, the termite shield prevented any damage to the home.