ALBANY, GA (WALB) - According to Termites.com, The annual cost of termite damage and control measures in the U.S. is estimated at $5 billion dollars.
The most robust termite season in South Georgia is just now getting underway.
"In south Georgia there's two types of homes: Those that have termites, and those that are going to get them," said Ben Tallent of Arrow Exterminators.
He has seen the type of destruction termites can cause homes.
Arrow Exterminators does free examinations to check for the pests.
"A lot of times when we're testing these areas to make sure it's sound," said Tallent. "But if it looks blistered or a bad paint job and we test it, a lot of times your finger will go right through the baseboard.'
Signs like hollow-sounding wood or papery wings near windows mean termites could already be feasting on your home.
"Termites might swarm out over here, but if the sun is shining through this window, they're going to come over here to this window," Tallent described. "And a lot of times that's when you're going to see the dead swarmers or the wings laying there."
Some preventative measures are as simple as where you store wood.
"People will have fire places and they love to store wood up near the house and that's the last thing you want to do. You want to get that wood (away from the home), because what you're doing is, you have termite food right there by the home," said Tallent.
Homeowners can get termite bait systems set up around the homes, which is also offered by competitor Adams Exterminators.
Vice president Stuart Sinyard says its best to get ahead of the problem.
"Call a professional, have them come in and do a good inspection of the home," said Sinyard. "And if there is an issue, you can go ahead and address it before it gets out of hand."
And left untreated, it can certainly get out of hand.
"We've had people call us and they've literally fallen through the floor," recalled Sinyard. "So it can get really bad."