Whether you’re an aspiring first-time homebuyer and about to make your first offer or you have just purchased your second or third home, you’re probably excited to enjoy your new space. But wait, is that a little critter by the backdoor? Maybe itâs just an antâ¦ nothing to worry about, right? Just to be sure there arenât any other pests lurking about your new house, you might want to consider getting a pest and termite inspection. Here are five reasons you should schedule a termite and pest inspection before any unwanted visitors wreak havoc on your dream home.
Why should you get a pest and termite inspection?
As a new homeowner, itâs always a good idea to cover all your bases and have a pest and termite inspection performed. Homes in more humid climates – think homes in Miami, FL or houses in Houston, TX – are more susceptible to termite infestations due to the increased moisture in the surrounding environment. If youâve seen any signs of a termite infestation, it might be a good idea to have a termite inspection. These signs can include buckling floorboards, creaky floors, or damaged wood.
For those still in the homebuying process, if you see signs of termite damage in the house, you should consider adding a termite contingency when making an offer on a home. A termite contingency may give you the option to back out of the sale if thereâs been significant damage found. Otherwise, you can try to negotiate with the seller to pay for the repairs.Â
What if youâre planning on just getting a regular home inspection? Your home inspector likely wonât look for specific types of pest or termite damage. However, if your home inspector does find damage, contacting a pest or termite inspector should be your next step. A pest or termite control specialist can help you determine what the best course of action is, likely scheduling an inspection to determine the extent of the damage.
Is a pest and termite inspection required before closing on a home?
If youâve already purchased your home, then you didnât miss out on any required inspections. For most homebuyers, termite and pest inspections are not required before closing on a home. However, certain types of loans such as FHA and VA loans may require you to pay for a pest inspection before your mortgage approval, so itâs best to check with your mortgage lender or real estate agent. Your real estate agent will also know if your particular state or county requires a pest inspection before purchasing a home.
5 benefits of having a termite or pest inspection
There are several benefits of having your home inspected for termites or pests.
1) Negotiating power. If the home youâre looking to buy ends up having damage from termites or pests, youâll likely have better negotiating power. Your real estate agent can help you decide what negotiations to make. These negotiations may include asking the seller to reduce the price so you can pay for pest control services or asking the seller to pay for any repairs or fumigation services before you close on the home.
2) Peace of mind. These inspections will be able to tell you if thereâs any structural damage from pests or termites. Your inspector will disclose any issues they find. Then youâll have an idea of what kind of maintenance you might need as the homeâs future owner.Â
3) Save money. Moving into a new home can feel like the dream, but itâs always a good idea to know what youâre getting yourself into. Without a pest or termite inspection, you may be foregoing a critical type of home inspection that may end up costing you more money down the road if a problem is left untreated.
4) Prepare for future expenses. If your pest or termite inspector finds certain types of pests in the home youâll have a better idea of what to look out for as a homeowner. That way, you will know if your new home or the area youâve moved to is susceptible to specific pests. It will also help you to plan ahead for any costs associated with keeping these pests away.
5) Find a local pest control company. Say your home is more susceptible to termites because youâre buying a house in a more humid area, or that spiders or mice are more common in your county. The good news is you’ve found a local pest control company to help you schedule regular maintenance. You’ll know just who to call for help if any critters start appearing in your house.
What to expect during a pest inspection
The inspection will take roughly 30 minutes but can vary based on the size of the home and whether thereâs a basement, crawl space, or any extra areas. The inspector will examine the interior and exterior of the home for any signs of damage, infestation, or specific areas that might be more susceptible to pests. Theyâll check for any signs of moisture. Damaged wood or buckled paint indicate the presence of wood-destroying insects like termites. They are more likely to be found in these areas vulnerable areas.
The inspector will check for a variety of different bugs such as carpenter ants, fleas, mosquitos, and moths, among others. Where you are located may also play a role in the types of pests your inspector will look for. Some pests are more likely to be found in certain areas or are local to your region. If these types of local pests are found during the inspection, your pest inspector may recommend regular pest control to keep these critters at bay.Â
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