A pest inspection involves a full inspection of your home for any evidence of termite activity and/or evidence of dry rot damage, or moisture conditions that could lead to an atmosphere for wood-destroying organisms or termites.
This means that a pest inspector would inspect the exterior of your home including all the trim, home siding, under roof eaves, etc. Pest Inspectors do a full inspection of the interior as well, especially checking for water leaks in the bathrooms, kitchen and laundry areas, windows, and inspecting the attic where applicable. Depending on the size of your home, and if it’s on a raised foundation.
Home Buyers and Sellers are always surprised to find out that a pest inspection does not inspect for ants, spiders, etc. That is not its purpose. It is a home inspection that inspects the wood. Helping make sure the structure is intact and will remain intact.
If any issues are found, a pest inspection will identify those items as a Section One item, or a Section Two item. Section One items are issues “currently” active and in need of immediate repair – like an active roof leak that has caused dry rot. Section Two items are not as urgent.
Section Two issues are items that may possibly cause Section one issues in the future – like if dirt was up against the house above the foundation line. Once all the Section One issues are repaired, the pest inspector comes out to the property to re-inspect to confirm repairs are completed. Once confirmed, the pest inspector provides a “Pest Clearance” or a “Cleared Pest” or a “Termite Clearance.” Any of those terms would apply.
In a standard purchase transaction, it is commonplace for a Seller to pay for a pest inspection report, provide the report to the Buyers, and to also repair all Section One issues on the pest inspection report. Section Two issues are commonly left for the Buyer to manage as the new homeowner after the closing of escrow.
Nowadays, however, with short sales and REO/bank owned properties becoming commonplace, Sellers do not provide a pest inspection report, nor make any pest repairs, on that particular transaction. Short Sales and REOs are normally sold “as is.” So, a Buyer has to make a decision on whether they want to purchase a pest inspection on their own, along with purchasing their whole house inspection, and any other inspection they choose.