Asked on Aug 22, 2012

Termite bond renewal??

by Susan

Hi, I have a rental house that got termites about 4 years ago. I had all the damaged wood replaced and then had the house treated for termites. They also installed Sentricon bait stations. They put wood in the bait stations. Each year they have been checking the bait stations quarterly. If termites were in the wood, they changed it out and put in bait. This year, they have changed the procedure and now put the bait out but only check it annually. They also say they do a visual inspection of the house, annually. I got the bill to renew the service for $240 from Arrow Exterminators. This will cover the bait stations and any type of retreat if the house gets termites again. This seems to be very expensive for what they are doing. They have also told me that they will remove the bait stations if I don't renew. They said that I didn't purchase those and was only allowed to have them as long as i renewed. I know there are other programs out there and even Home Depot has termite bait stakes.

Anyone have experience, comments or expertise to share??

Could I do the treatments myself? If yes, please share information on how to get rid of termites naturally, thanks

  5 answers
  • Leslie D Leslie D on Aug 22, 2012
    So it's basically $60/trip and they retreat for free if termites come back. I don't think that's unreasonable for 4 trips and an insurance policy against future infestation. However, witih that said, you can always tell them that you found a company who will do the same thing for $150 annually, but would prefer to keep them since you are so satisfied with their service and since they are familiar with your house, and ask if they are willing to meet that price. After asking the question, just be silent on the your end of the phone and and see if they will offer a discount. In today's economy, companies frequently offer discounts to keep your business. I have zero experience with self-treatment, so this would be the only advice I could offer, other than the negotiating tactic, which I use daily and have great success with. Good luck!.
  • KMS Woodworks KMS Woodworks on Aug 22, 2012
    I'm going to wait for one of my fellow experts to chime in for this one...Here in Colorado Termites are a rarity...lucky for us as our climate is too dry. My biggest repairs concerning wood issues have to deal with leaks or poor flashing which has resulted in basic wood rot. In these cases keeping the water out is key to longevity. But I agree that seems like a lot of money for only an annual visit, If they made quarterly trips this would seem fine...60 bucks or so per visit...How long can it take to take a peek? Besides if the termites moved in a few days after a visit one year's worth of eating the house will leave a far bigger problem than only 3 months worth.
  • Leslie D Leslie D on Aug 22, 2012
    I missed the part where they changed it to an annual inspection. That is excessive. It also struck me that they actually have incentive NOT to find active termites since they are basically insuring the house. I think I would call around to see what other companies would charge for the same service, be it quarterly or annual.
  • Susan, That is a reasonable fee for a termite warranty. The bait stations that they use like they said are not yours to keep. You are basically renting them. So the removal process is normal. You can do a few things if you do not want to deal with an exterminator but you will risk damage if your not diligent about what I am about to tell you. Once the termite colonies are killed off from the poison used in the bait stations then simply place wooden sticks in the place of the bait itself. If the termites come back they attack the wood sticks in these stations first. The annual or quarterly visit is to check to see if the wood has been damaged. If they find that it is, they simply remove the wood and replace again new wood with the poison. Once the damage stops, they remove the bait and replace again with new fresh wood to monitor. OK, So what can you do? You can go out to your local home center and purchase 1x2 pine boards. Cut them about 12 inches long. Paint the top red or some color so you can see them if you use any plant coverings around the house. Hammer them into the ground so about four or five inches stick remains above the ground. Then wait. Every few months, pull them up and check them for insect damage. There may be some rot decay depending upon how damp the soil is next to the house, and on those throw away and replace. If termites come back, the wood stick will be damaged. If that is the case, you then pay them the couple thousand dollars to re-bait the house. Because you broke the contract, you will be responsible to start all over again with the treatment process. You can also do your own treatments, although I frown upon these., But you can purchase chemicals that you yourself can apply around the foundation of the home. However, you must understand, That the bait system that you currently have does not poison the soils. Nor the water supply if your using a well. So if you decide to use the chemical method, be sure to follow the directions well and not over treat as folks often do thinking more is better. Lastly again check the sticks often. They should be placed every six feet or so apart. About six inches away from the foundation of the home.
  • Jeanette S Jeanette S on Aug 23, 2012
    Susan, living in Georgia, termites is not an "if" factor but a "when" factor. I personally like the inspection system. I have no experience with the bait system since we have always had the spray/inspect system. Mine is a bit higher than yours, but the company I use has an unlimited repair bond...that is a big part of the cost of any serivce. Whatever you do, do not go without termite protection if nothing but a system you are good about monitoring!