Pest Inspection for Home Purchase: Who Should Pay?

Jan 27, 2023 | Residential Pest Control

Pest Inspection for Home Purchase: Who Should Pay?
When buying a new home, you typically check for how many bedrooms and bathrooms there are, if the kitchen is large enough to accommodate your food passion, or if the yard provides enough space for your children and pets. In most cases, the last thing you are thinking about is if the home comes with unwanted pests or damage from previous pests that can’t be seen. However, checking for hidden signs of pest infestations and damage is often required by some lenders and, in some cases, may even require the seller to pay for the inspection.

Key takeaways

  • While most mortgage lenders often require a traditional home inspection, general home inspectors don’t always know how to identify pest infestations or damage these infestations may have caused to the home.
  • While a pest inspection is only sometimes required when purchasing a home, most homebuyers want to avoid moving into a home filled with pests or damage. If pests are found, the seller may opt to remedy the problem, or, as the homebuyer, you may have bargaining power when it comes to the sale price if you choose to remedy the infestation yourself.
  • Pest and termite inspections are not required in the State of California. However, many lenders will require at least a termite inspection when financing a home.

Do I need to get a pest inspection when buying a house?

While most home purchases require a home inspection where an inspector may find unwanted pests, a pest inspection is not always a requirement. However, some lenders may require a pest inspection, such as a termite inspection, before completing a home purchase.

While California does not require a pest inspection despite regular termite infestations, as a homebuyer, you want the peace of mind that a pest inspection offers. For example, other pests, such as cockroaches or rodents, can spread bacteria and viruses that can be potentially dangerous for you and your family. Making sure your home is pest-free with a pest inspection before you purchase provides additional security and may even be required by your homeowner’s insurance.

Does the seller have to pay for a pest inspection?

In most cases, who pays for a pest inspection is negotiable and can be paid by either the buyer or the seller. The only time that changes is if you are purchasing a home with a VA loan. If you are buying a home in California, as well as in nine other states, the VA allows anyone to pay for the pest inspection.

In the remaining states, however, the seller or the lender must pay for the inspection. In addition, your real estate agent can provide you with the normal for your area when determining who typically pays for a pest inspection.

What is a pest inspection?

A pest inspection is a thorough search of a home, both inside and outside, looking for bugs, rodents, and other household pests that can cause damage to the structure of the home, as well as present potential health hazards. A pest control and pest management specialist will look for live bugs and pests, droppings, as well as evidence of prior infestation and damage, such as termite damage. They will look for potential areas of entry where pests can get in and infest the home.

What does a pest inspection entail?

To better understand what a pest inspection entails, let’s take a closer look at exactly what the technician does when looking for signs of potential pest problems and damage and what they provide the homeowner and buyer.

1. Signs of infestation

A pest inspection begins with a thorough inspection of both the interior of the home as well as the surrounding property. A technician will examine all areas of the property, including garages, sheds, attics, and crawl spaces. They are looking for the presence of bugs, such as wood-destroying insects, or other pests, such as rodents, snakes, and spiders. They identify potential points of entry where the pests are getting in and identify any pests found.

2. Structural evaluation

A home pest infestation begins when pests get into your home. Oftentimes, this means that pests have taken advantage of existing structural openings or created a way in on their own, causing structural damage as they go. A pest technician looks for potential points of entry and signs of potential structural damage, such as wood damage from termites or damage to wiring and insulation from rodents.

3. Pest inspection report

When a pest inspector identifies a pest infestation, they provide the seller and the buyer with a detailed report that outlines the type of pest infestation and any potential damage the pest did to the home. In addition, they provide recommendations for treatment and a price estimate for the necessary treatment.

4. Recommendations and instructions for treatment and damage repair

If home damage is discovered, the technician will provide a detailed report that highlights the damage as well as recommendations for repair. When damage is detected, they often provide a report to the home appraiser that will often require damage repair before the sale.

How long does a pest inspection take?

The average pest inspection can take anywhere from 30 minutes to a couple of hours. This depends on the size of the home and what the technician discovers during their inspection. If an infestation or damage is discovered and repairs and extermination are necessary, your lender may require an additional inspection to ensure everything was exterminated and the damage was repaired.

How much does a pest inspection cost?

Pest inspections can range from $75 to a few hundred dollars, depending on the size of the home and the pest control company chosen. This price is only for the inspection and does not cover any potential extermination measures or repairs.

Ensure the home you are buying is pest-free

While a pest inspection is not always required, as a buyer, it is beneficial to know ahead of time if your dream home comes with unwanted roommates. Unfortunately, pests like termites can cause thousands of dollars in damage well before they are identified, and buying a home that is already being eaten away by termites could cost you thousands down the road. Choosing a pest inspection before buying a home can save you these costs, with the seller often having to remedy the infestation and damage before the sale will go through.

Give yourself peace of mind when buying a new home

If you are looking to purchase a new home but want to make sure the home is pest-free, the team of experts at Arrest A Pest is here to help. Our technicians specialize in pest identification, discovering potential points of entry that can be corrected, identifying potential structural damage, and repairing solutions. In addition, once you purchase the home, our team can help ensure your home remains pest-free and safe for you and your family.

To learn more, schedule an appointment today.

Adam Judnich

Adam Judnich

Owner @ Arrest A Pest

Serving the entire Coachella Valley

Arrest A Pest is your top-rated pest and bug control solution in the Coachella Valley! As a family-owned and operated business, our technicians grew up in the Coachella Valley and have a deep understanding of the pests in our area.

We understand that every pest infestation is an emergency, and we offer quick, safe, and thorough pest solutions and preventions for your home or business. No matter what pests are invading your space, our technicians are armed with state-of-the-art technology designed to rid your home or business of pests and help you stay pest-free long into the future.

Contact us today to schedule your FREE evaluation and let our team send the pests packing!

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