We Have Termites but No One Wants to Treat!

7 Replies

I have a property in an HOA. My property is the middle unit in a 5 unit townhouse building. All five units have termites but only myself & one other owner wants to treat.

I've been told by all termite vendors that I've spoken to that just treating my unit will do no good. Is there anyway we can force the other unit owners or the HOA to treat for termites???

 Thank you!

Get you a shovel, 5 gal. bucket and some Termidor off of Amazon.  Dig you a trench around the slab foundation of all 5 units, mix Termidor with water via instructions and dump it in the trench.  You can spot treat areas in your home like around the tub area (where it's open in the slab) and toilet flange.  You can also buy a Termidor spray foam product that will piece through sheet rock and you can treat inner walls as well.  If nothing else, treat at least your unit yourself.  Can't hurt.  If you DIY, it won't cost you 1,000's either...

Termites survive off water. They live at the highest point of the property and come down to the ground for water.

The proper way to exterminate for termites is this purchase the chemical termidor Sc control from your local extermination store.

Termidor SC Termite Control works better and faster than termite bait stations, and unlike many termiticides, it does not leave unpleasant odor.

Mix the chemical with water in a container with a sprayer. Home Depot sells the for less than $15.

Professionals drill (two feet or the longest masonry bit available) into the hole every 24 inches around the exterior and interior (if the basement is not finished) perimeter of the building and spray the chemical into the hole.

After you have sprayed the chemical in the hole patch the hole with cement so the rain doesn't flush the chemical out.

Check any neighboring trees for termite damage. They may need to be removed or treated the same way as the property.

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Might be worth having an attorney look over your HOA rules regarding actions by your neighbors affecting your property but talk nice to your neighbors first. What is the objection? Cost? Smell? Termites traveling between units and setting up a new home? Help them to understand everyone's property value will sink together if this isn't addressed.

First and foremost – you need to protect your investment. I would go in with the neighbor that wants to help and treat the whole building. It will be worth it in the end.

@Justin Fox is correct in that you could do it yourself, but if it doesn't work, then someone could potentially come after you. Trenching around the property is the preferred mechanism, but in an attached multifamily situation, you would need to trench below the units along the adjoining walls. Also – in many states you need a pesticide applicator's license to apply chemicals on property that is not your own. If it was a SFH, then no problem , but given your situation, there could be too much liability in that approach.

I own a condo and our annual inspection and treatments are covered under the HOA fees. Sounds like that's not the case for you. Most HOAs have some sort of recourse clause for something like this, but you may have to get creative in your interpretation. There should be some sort of clause regarding damage to units or neglect that causes damage. Perhaps a nuisance clause could be used. By refusing to treat, your neighbors are effectively causing damage to your unit and all properly enacted HOAs have recourse for that.

Send a certified letter to all of your neighbors. Include a copy of the inspection report noting the active infestation and showing any damage. Get three treatment estimates from reputable companies in the area and include those as well. Tell them that you are planning to have the treatment done by ABC company (one of the included quotes). Split up the treatment price and list it on a per-unit basis and tell them that you will expect them to pay their share within 30 days. Inform the neighbors that refusing to treat is in violation of whatever clause(s) in your HOA docs that you can find. Tell them that if they do not pay their share, then you will seek restitution legally. Let them know that if it comes to that, they will be responsible for their share of the treatment costs as well as any legal fees and collections costs which will make it much more expensive. I would also investigate the possibility of filing a mechanic's lien on their property. If that is allowable, then make mention of that in the letter as well. Give them 30 days.

Once the treatment is scheduled, tell them when it will be happening (provide at least 72 hrs written notice).  The treatment company will likely need access to their individual crawlspaces which could present a problem if you have a stubborn neighbor.  Stay above board on everything.

Who is the insurer for the HOA? They can probably force the issue. I can't imagine they would want to renew the insurance if you don't treat.

If anything you could get an injunction to force the other property owners to assist in the treatment. The HOA is unlikely going to have anything to do with the treatment since it is within the property, unless the language of the HOA agreement states otherwise. Regardless, I would get a paper trail going and if nothing forms within 7-14 days go to an attorney to get the ball going; your attorney fees can be spread through the other homeowners so don't be afraid to spend a little money; like another post said, you MUST protect your investment. You are the owner and not leasing the property, correct?

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