The average cost of dealing with a termite infestation is between $5,000 and $10,000. However, it should be noted that this figure can be affected by the size and severity of the infestation. In some cases, the cost can be as much as $100,000.
Unfortunately, the average Australian insurance policy doesn’t cover termite damage! That means you will be left with the bill. There is never a pleasant way of finding $5,000 or more to deal with a problem that you didn’t envision having.
Fortunately, if you are looking for a new home or planning on building your own, there is a way to prevent this from being an issue. You simply need to contact a specialist in structural steel Sydney and build a steel home.
It will help to ensure you don’t have a termite issue.
Termites Eat Wood
Wood-framed houses are a common sight across Australia, they are a traditional way of creating your home. Wood is strong, adaptable, and is a cost-effective building material. It is also available in abundance across the country.
However, termites eat anything cellulose-based, especially wood. They will generally find something attractive in your yard, such as a pile of firewood or even rotting trees. Over time they will move closer to your home and then enter, attracted by the wood and the warmth.
A single colony of termites can eat the equivalent of one foot of wood in just five months. You can imagine the potential structural issues when you lose that much wood. It doesn’t matter if it is from one beam or lots of different pieces of wood.
However, termites don’t eat metal. There is no cellulose in metal to attract termites and their teeth are not strong enough to damage it. Having a steel house eliminates most of the need to worry about termites.
It Is Not Just Your Building
Of course, the assumption is that your home is made entirely from metal. However, although it may be possible to create steel framing and even use steel panels, your furniture is still likely to be wood. After all, wood is warmer and more comfortable than metal. It also generally provides a better ambiance.
Termites that get into your home don’t just attack the frame of your home, they will also attack the floorboards and furniture, causing a huge amount of damage.
Steel framed houses are much less appealing to termites as they cannot get inside the building easily. This means they are likely to go elsewhere, saving you from a lot of financial pain.
This doesn’t mean you are completely safe, termites can still invade your home in other ways, such as when you bring used furniture home. That’s why you need to check furniture carefully when buying and periodically at home.
Termite colonies start small and grow quickly, the earlier you spot an issue the easier it is to deal with it.
Termites may not be attracted to steel but that doesn’t mean they don’t like the warmth and the dampness of your home, especially in the foundations.
This is why the way you build your home is very important. It is best to create concrete foundations that your steel bolts directly to. The concrete foundations need to be slightly larger than the house you are building, the overhang won’t be visible to anyone when the build is finished but it will make it very hard for any pests to get into your home.
Termites often get under homes by tunneling through the soil that surrounds the home. This is easy for them to move through and gives them direct access to your home and the wood in it. By ensuring the concrete base overlaps the house and that you have at least six inches of concrete surrounding your home, you will make it very difficult for the termites to get into your home.
Termite Treatment Affect The Environment
Another important consideration regarding steel-framed houses is how they help you protect the environment. Termites are a serious problem in any house. Of course, they can make your house structurally unsafe. But, whether the infestation is small or large, it can be difficult to locate the termite colony and be certain that you have eliminated all of them.
That’s why most people get the professionals in to deal with the issue for them.
However dealing with the issue effectively means spraying chemical pesticides under your home, covering all the wood you can find to kill the termites. This is effective but can have a devastating effect on the environment. In addition, there is no guarantee that the chemical spray will get every inch of the wood under your house and kill all the termites. It is not easy to get to all the wood.
You should also note that termite prevention chemicals can be used to treat the wood or even the ground around your home. Unfortunately, these are just as dangerous to the environment and may not be 100% effective. The termites can usually find a small gap in the chemical treatment and make their way back and forth. In effect, the treatment has damaged the environment without eliminating the issue.
The other problem with termite treatment and protection sprays are that they need to be reapplied regularly. This isn’t an issue with metal which is of no interest to the termites. That means building with metal is the smart option.
In fact, even though it can be more expensive to build with metal, the lack of regular treatment means the cost of steel-framed buildings is generally cheaper in the long term. They are also more likely to be standing in ten twenty, or more years as they won’t have been attacked by termites.
It is worth noting that metal homes aren’t just a great way to prevent termites from getting into your home. The majority of other pests will not be able to get past your metal barriers. You will need to inspect your metal periodically to ensure it is not damaged. Metal that is damaged is at risk of corrosion which will affect the structural integrity and pest protection your home gives you.
But, regular inspections and repairs if necessary, will keep the pests out. That is better for your wallet and for your peace of mind.
You may not have considered this before but sometimes termites and other pests enter your home from necessity and then choose to stay because you are offering everything they need. That’s food, warmth, and water. One of the biggest reasons they need somewhere safe is the extreme weather which is becoming increasingly common around the globe.
When extreme weather is coming animals and pests know and look for somewhere safe to hide. You can check your house and eliminate water leaks, you can even make sure that all food is put away in sealed containers and the house is kept clean. This will dissuade pets in normal times. But, you can’t change the fact that your house is warm and safe.
But, if you have a steel house the pests, particularly termites, will not be able to get in. The house will offer you protection against all the extreme weather that you can find, but the termites will not be so lucky.
It is worth noting that steel houses are strong enough to resist hurricanes and earthquakes, as well as most fires. This makes them a good choice if you live in a risk area.
You should be aware that while wood can be eaten by termites this is not the only thing that can destroy t and give your home structural issues. Dry rot is also a common issue.
This occurs in places with moderate to high humidity. The humidity can be because of where you live o simply because of in-house conditions, such as your bathroom. The humidity attracts fungus to your home which sits on the wood and attacks it. This will weaken the wood and can spread surprisingly quickly through your home.
It should be noted that dry rot cannot spread through brick and plaster, allowing you to isolate your risk areas from the rest of your home.
Of course, steel is impervious to dry rot, eliminating another concern as a homeowner.
Choosing A Steel Building
Building with steel is not a new concept. This approach has been used in industry for a long time. It is cost-efficient and durable, saving property owners massive amounts of money over the long term. But, steel can also be attractive.
While the steel frame tends to be straightforward metal posts and beams, the cladding can be almost any color you can think of and can be designed in different ways. Your steel home can actually mimic the look of a timber-framed house.
Of course, using steel also gives you a great deal of strength and flexibility in your home, making it the best choice for you to beat termites and have a unique but stylish property.
By Jesse Huges