Who Pays for Termite Inspections & What Treatment Costs

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Wondering who pays for termite inspections? Curious about what treatment will cost you? If you're planning on selling and are concerned that you may have some pesky critters in or around your property, this post will help you learn about what you need to do and how much you can expect to spend.

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Who Pays for Inspections

In California and in almost all other states, sellers pay termite inspection costs. The cost is typically inexpensive, ranging from $50 to $150. Some termite companies even offer a free inspection in the hopes that they'll earn your business and can handle any necessary (and more expensive) treatment.

Who Pays for Treatment

Section 1

Termite inspection reports describe items as either "Section 1" or "Section 2". Section 1 items typically fall into the closing costs for the seller, meaning sellers pay for these treatments. This includes the cost of remediation, like tenting or spraying to eliminate an active termite infestation. It also means paying for things like repair of dry rot or wood that has been chewed by termites.

Section 2

By contrast, buyers typically pay for Section 2 which is anything considered termite prevention. For example, a termite inspection report may state: "We advise that you move the soil away from touching the base of the house to reduce the odds of future termite problems." This line item would be considered a preventative recommendation and the financial obligation involved with the process would fall to the buyer.

Termites in an “As Is” Sale

An as-is sale occurs when the seller is not willing to make any repairs or spend money on any treatments. A seller opting not to make any termite repairs can actually cause issues for a buyer seeking a bank loan. Why? Since the home will become part of the bank's collateral, the bank doesn't want termites damaging it. Because of this, it's very common for a bank to ask for a termite certificate prior to funding a loan. As with most things, this point is negotiable so buyers should be prepared to ask for a contingency stating the seller pays for a termite inspection,  treatment, or both - even on an as-is sale. Another option is for the buyer to pay for it themselves, but if the seller is eager to close, they'll be willing to pick up the tab.

Recommendations for Sellers

As the seller, you should expect to pay for the termite inspection cost and Section 1 termite treatment. If you negotiate an offer that states you are not responsible for paying for Section 1 remediation, make sure the buyer tracks whether or not the bank requires a termite certificate. If the bank requires one, be sure to schedule a termite inspection early so closing is not delayed.

Interested in a free termite inspection or termite certificate? We may be able to recommend a vendor in your area. Send us an email with the zip code of the home and we'll check into it for you!

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