Lions, Tigers and Termites, oh my!

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Safe Haven Realty CalBRE# 01433049

California Termites


Lions, Tigers and Termites, oh my! So, I kind of fibbed about the lions and tigers, but we have enough termites in California to make up for it. I recently had a buyer do the Heebie Jeebie dance when she learned that the property she intends to buy is infested with subterranean termites.

The Urban Dictionary defines the Heebie Jeebies as "A feeling of minor fright, anxiety, nervousness, apprehension, 'the willies', phobic." Yep, that's about right. Knowing that ANY 6+ legged pest is crawling under your house is enough to keep you awake at night.

So here is what happens next. The pest company will send out a technician to chemically treat the subarea soil. Then they will drill and pressure treat concrete walkways, patios, steps and porches. I hate the thought of chemicals being used, but if this isn't done, the termites will destroy any wood they come in contact with. Although I've heard they don't like redwood that much.

Below is a photo of a termite "tube" coming up from the garage floor to the threshold step into the house. The subterranean termites live below and love moisture, but the have to come up for air ... I mean wood ... to survive.



We choose where we live, regardless of the consequences. Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Earthquakes, Tsunamis, Locusts, Alligators. Lions, Tigers and Termites, oh my.


United States Termite Map

* United States Termite Map. I guess Alaska doesn't count.


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Safe Haven Realty

Cynthia Larsen (707-332-2560) is an independent broker and owner of Safe Haven Realty in Sonoma County, California. Visit to view available homes for sale and to learn more about this beautiful wine country destination.




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Kathryn Acciari
Cameron Real Estate Group - Shrewsbury, MA
RSPS, SRS, REALTOR(R) Sturbridge-Shrewsbury MA

We often forget that we create dwellings first and foremost to protect ourselves from nature. And, nature will always try to get inside! Luckily, pests like termites can be detected and prevented from doing damage. Great post, Cynthia!

Dec 05, 2017 11:03 AM #1
Anna Banana Kruchten CRS,CRB
Phoenix Property Shoppe - Phoenix, AZ
Arizona's Top Banana of Real Estate!

Cynthia our joke in AZ is that there are two kinds of houses - one that has termites and the other that will have termites! Not a big deal if caught early and it usually is in my neck of the woods. Folks from other areas do freak out a bit until they understand it's just part of the landscape.

Dec 05, 2017 11:03 AM #2
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

Here in Sacramento, it is those Subterranean Termites that we encounter most often.  Occasionally however, we see the kind prevalent in Southern California, and need to tent the house to eradicate.

Dec 05, 2017 01:39 PM #3
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Northern VA

Termites are prevalent here.  And this area having an infatuation with shredded wood mulch, it's only a matter of time before homes get the creep factor of termites moving in.

Dec 05, 2017 03:08 PM #4
Sheila Anderson
Referral Group Incorporated - East Brunswick, NJ
The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133

Good morning Cynthia. Termites are really scary. If the damage is overwhelming I move on.

Dec 06, 2017 08:58 AM #5
Elizabeth Weintraub Sacramento Real Estate Agent, Top 1% of Lyon Agents
Lyon Real Estate - Sacramento, CA
Put 40 years of experience to work for you

Hi Cynthia: If it's not termites, it's powder post beetles or carpenter ants. I had a pest company present an inspection claiming an infestation when the tubes had been vacated a long time ago. For some reason, the agent on the other side thought they should have removed the tubes 2 years ago when they were eradicated, and I don't know of any companies who remove the tubes. Do you?

Dec 06, 2017 09:06 AM #6
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Cynthia Larsen

Independent Broker Serving Sonoma County, CA
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