All posts by StacyD

Why is it so important to have a good WDI Inspection?

Nobody wants a new homeowner to suddenly find out that the termite report they received when buying their home, turned out to be inaccurate. Since in Virginia there are no laws governing who can conduct a Wood Destroying Insect (WDI) Report, anybody can legally do one, trained or not. One of the most structurally damaging wood destroying insects are termites. Termites cause over $5 billion in damage to U.S. homes each year. Since termites, and most other wood destroying insects, are generally hidden from our view, it takes a trained professional to carefully detect conducive conditions, to know the habits and patterns of each insect, and to pinpoint the signs of infestations. Hiring someone without this knowledge can lead to unexpected infestations, hidden structural damage, and costly repairs.

The Virginia Pest Management Association, a statewide trade association offering education and training to pest management professionals, created the WDI Inspector Certification Program. This program prepares pest professionals to perform consistent, thorough inspections that their customers can truly rely on.

– Each VPMA Certified Inspector is classroom trained, then tested to ensure that they are equipped with the knowledge and ability to conduct accurate termite reports.

– Each Certified Inspector must be employed by a company holding a pesticide business license, which ensures that the inspector is backed by a company holding liability insurance.

– Each Certified Inspector must also have a minimum certification by the Virginia Department of Agriculture (VDACS) that certifies their knowledge in general pests.

When you choose a technician that has achieved the rank of VPMA Certified Inspector, you and your customers can be confident that the inspection will be performed according to the strictest standards and reports will be delivered in a timely manner. With this program, VPMA has raised the bar when it comes to ethical, accurate inspections.

Warning: If you hire a non-certified inspector, you are not assured that accurate information will reach the buyer or seller. In addtion, not all individuals performing inspections have liability insurance which is a requirement for VPMA Certified Inspector designation.

Watch for this symbol which means accurate termite reports!

What is IPM and How Does it Affect Me as a Homeowner?

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a new mind-set regarding pest management. Back when I started in the pest management industry, in 1983, the idea what to eradicate pest infestations as they were and when they were found. Chemicals were considerably more harsh and typically families were required to leave their homes for approximately four (4) to six (6) hours until the odor dissipated and the chemical dried.

Present day pest management, IPM, focuses less on chemical applications and more on identifying the reasons (harborage, access, food or water sources) that are attracting rodents and insects to your homes. Things like, overfilled gutters that trap rainwater provide food, water and harborage areas. American roaches and other occasional invader pests will use gutters to breed and gain water. Piled up decaying materials–last fall’s leaves, twigs and grass clippings–offer harborage and food sources.

IPM is a cooperative method of pest management between the Pest Management Professional (PMP) and the homeowner. Our PMP’s are trained to investigate and explain problematic areas. Things like plumbing line chases, or electrical lines can provide insects and rodents with unfettered access to your environment. Rats and mice need a hole no bigger than the size of a quarter to gain access into your home.

Pesticides are used only after access elimination is accomplished. When necessary, chemical applications are applied from chemicals that have the least impact on the environment to those with more impact. As your PMP’s visit your home, you will likely see them investigating more than ever before; there is a method to their madness.