If you own your home, you can't afford to take chances with termites. You might not realize this, but your home insurance won't cover damage caused by termites, which means that you'll be stuck with the cost of repairs should the pest invade your home. To make sure your home doesn't fall victim to a termite invasion, here are four steps you should take right away.

Start with a Termite Inspection

When it comes to protecting your home from termite damage, your first line of defense starts with an inspection. You need to have a pest control company come out and conduct a thorough inspection of your entire home. While there are some tell-tale signs that you can identify on your own—such as wood dust on your windowsills—other signs aren't as easy to identify. Your pest control provider will be able to identify any termite troubles you're dealing with, and create a treatment plan for getting rid of them.

Know What's Under the Carpet

If you don't know what's under your carpet, it's time to take your shoes off and walk around. Cracks in your foundation create an easy access point for termites—and for other pests. If you discover ridges or gaps under your carpet, you need to have a contractor come out and take care of the repairs to your foundation. A solid foundation provides protection against termite infestations.

Choose the Right Wood

If you're going to be installing a new deck or fence on your property, be sure to choose the right wood. Termites will devour most wood, but there are some types of wood that they prefer to avoid. Those include the heart wood of cedar and redwood. In addition, certain Malaysian and Hawaiian woods are actually toxic to termites. Those woods include tualang and casuarinas pine. If you prefer to choose a different type of wood, you can also use those that have been pressure-treated, as they'll keep the termites away, as well.

Don't Forget the Roof

If you're concerned about termite infestations, you need to pay close attention to your roof. You may not realize this, but roof problems can attract termites, especially problems involving the wood substructure. Also, if you have wood shake shingles that are rotting, they could be attracting termites, as well. To make sure that your roof isn't increasing your risk of termite infestations, have it inspected as soon as possible.

For more information, contact a pest control league in your area.