Termites are an increasing problem in Australia and residents are urged not to adopt the ‘it won’t happen to me’ attitude as they can occur anytime and anywhere at any home no matter how old or new, according to Archicentre Australia.
The national architect’s advisory service says there are no such places as termite free zones on the Australian mainland and residents should take necessary steps to protect their homes from these voracious timber destroyers.
Archicentre Australia says home occupants should avail themselves of its independent timber pest inspection service, with inspections carried out by a fully qualified timber pest expert. If caught early, termites can be effectively controlled before they cause damage that can threaten the integrity of any home.
Homes with built-in termite protection barriers need to ensure these are not damaged while regular inspections by qualified experts also provide added peace of mind.
Archicentre Australia director Peter Georgiev says the problem is increasing because construction of most homes since the 1960s has been of a higher risk type because of the use of concrete slabs with little clearance from the ground and the use of untreated soft wood timber for framing.
He says older homes are also at increased risk due to the decreasing residual effectiveness of the long-banned organochlorines previously used to prevent termite infestations.
“To most people, their most important asset is their home and it is, therefore, important that termite protection remain a priority for every home owner.
“The cost of implementing anti-termite measures is minor when taking into consideration the cost of repairing termite damage,” Peter Georgiev says.
A 2012 Industry Study commissioned by Australian Environmental Pest Managers Association (AEPMA) estimated the average cost of treatment and repair of damage to be approximately $10,000 per house. The average cost of termites to the housing industry is almost $4 billion per year.
A 2003 survey by Archicentre, the previous incarnation of Archicentre Australia, estimated that 650,000 Australian homes had become infested with termites in the previous five years and Peter Georgiev says since then the problem has become worse.
“These statistics show that it is important to take the termite threat into account when purchasing and/or maintaining an existing property or building a new home,” Peter Georgiev adds.
“Also, if a threat is identified, it is vital that qualified and experienced pest managers are used, and AEPMA has developed thorough and effective codes of practice for termite management.
“The codes of practice are regularly revised to ensure that they are technically correct and set out the best options for dealing with termites. The codes represent the best available knowledge available to industry to deal with termites in existing buildings and in preconstruction.”
He says a list of accredited companies that have signed up to the codes of practice is available on the AEPMA website – www.aepma.com.au
For more information go to www.archicentreaustralia.com.au
This media release has been written and distributed by:
Peter Georgiev, Director
Level 1, 9 Strathalbyn Street,
Kew East, VICTORIA, 3102
Phone: 1300 13 45 13 | 03 9859 9950