Sellers want their house in tip-top shape before they allow buyers to start viewing it. Many go to the length of renovating portions of the house to make the property appeal to more buyers and with the hope that it will fetch a higher resale price.
However, there are unexpected challenges that can reduce the value of a property.
Pests are not just minor annoyances. They put your and your family’s health at risk. They bring illness-causing pathogens into the house.
A pesky mosquito, for example, will bite and inject viruses-laden saliva into the human’s body, causing an illness. The West Nile virus causes a mosquito-borne disease in the United States and other parts of the world. It is most common around summer. In 2020, the West Nile virus was detected across 44 states and a total of 557 cases were reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
On the other hand, house flies bring enteric diseases or bacterial diseases that are transmitted through fecal contamination of food and water. Cholera is a well-known enteric disease that manifests in symptoms such as thirst, vomiting, and profuse watery diarrhea.
In addition, pests also destroy houses, pulling down their resale price significantly. Here are the common pests that homeowners should be worried about, and you can do to prevent them from invading your house.
Termites are the most destructive pests to a house. These little critters cause over $5 billion in property damage every year across the nation, according to the National Management Association.
Worse, you probably would not know that you have an infestation until the materials beneath the surface have been annihilated.
Termites feed on moisture and wood. Anywhere that has both is susceptible to an infestation.
They can destroy walls and floors, compromising the integrity of the home. If the damage is minimal, the buyers would not care. However, if the presence of the critters is noticeable, the buyer might negotiate for a lower closing cost because they will have to shell out more money for repairs.
That is why it is important to notice the signs that you have an infestation. You might see some blisters that look like water damage on the affected wood. If it seems hollow, termites have already started breaking down the wood beneath the surface. As soon as you see a hole on the wall or floor, even if it is small, the damage has already been done.
You also might encounter mud tubes around the exterior of your house. Termites use these as tunnels to create the perfect environment for them to nest while they feed on wood.
To prevent them from invading the house in the first place, avoid stacking wood near the house. If you use firewood, store them above the ground and away from the house. A stack of firewood on the ground will only attract termites.
Rodents also cause a lot of headaches, and expensive expenses, for homeowners. These creatures are known to gnaw on wood, pipes, and wires. If they are around, at some point, you surely will have to shell out cash for repairs and replacements.
Experts suspect that about 25% of all house fires that started without any clear source are actually caused by rodents.
The presence of rodents inside a house is a lot more obvious. They come in and out of holes on the walls and the floors, they leave behind droppings on surfaces, and you can hear the pitter-patter of their small feet as well as their squeaks in your ceiling. As soon as you discover that you have rodents, it is best to get rid of them. A mouse can give birth to five to 10 litters every year. In each litter, there are about five to six newborns that will mature and start to wreak havoc in a month.
The best way to prevent rodents from entering the house is to lock them out. Seal every gap and hole where they can run through. Homeowners should also move food sources away from the house.
Selling a house with rodents will be a challenge because it will scare buyers away.
Unlike mosquitoes and house flies, bed bugs will not make you ill. However, they are still uncomfortable to have around, and they are difficult to eliminate.
That is why home buyers do not want them.
There have been sales that were canceled after the buyer found out that the house has a bed bug infestation. Although they are most common in the bedroom, they also expand their presence to the living room and other parts of the house where they can hide undetected while they reproduce unmitigated.
Prevent bed bugs by cleaning secondhand furniture thoroughly before bringing it into the house and changing bed sheets and pillowcases regularly.
A house is an investment. Many people go into becoming a homeowner knowing that the property will rise in value in the future. However, having pests will lower the closing cost of the house.