by Accurate | Single Family Home
You found your dream home, but during your inspection, they find termite damage. Who Pays For Termite Treatment? Does that mean you have to shell out hundreds or thousands more to fix it and get rid of the bugs? Or does it mean the seller has to pay and maybe even knock some money off the home price?
In most cases, termite prevention is paid for by the buyers, and termite treatment is paid for by the seller in the closing costs. However, if the seller listed the house “as is,” the buyers are responsible for all termite damage and future prevention costs.
Of course, there are always contingencies that can make this decision more complicated. For example, the state you are buying a home in may have its own specific rules about termite damage. It is important to know all of the rules and laws about home buying before signing a contract.
It Is All About the Contract
The seller writes up the contract and typically lists who is responsible for termite damage if there is any question in the matter. If the seller lists in the contract that the buyer has to pay for any pest damage or repairs found, it will be the buyer’s responsibility.
However, you should have already read the contract before signing, which means the inspection report will have already been done. Before signing a contract to buy a home, there are certain inspections and paperwork you want to have. Some of these include:
- Closing cost obligations
- Disclosure agreement
- Home appraisal report
- Home inspection contingency
- Home maintenance and repair records
- Termite inspection contingency
- Terms of finance
The terms of finance and closing obligations are typically taken care of by your real estate agent. Unless you are a professional home buyer, it is best to have a real estate agent handle all of the important points you may not understand. For example, you may not have known that in most states, the seller is required to have an inspection done and provide a disclosure agreement.
What is a Disclosure Agreement?
43 out of 50 states have seller disclosure report laws that have to be followed when selling a home. Although each state has different laws about what you have to disclose, the basic requirements include material issues and information about the home’s condition and the property being sold.
Material issues include those that may affect the property’s value or the buyers’ decision to buy the home. This does not mean that the seller has to tell you everything they do not like about the house. It just means that they have to let you know about any information they have about the home that may impact the sale.
If you are the seller, the disclosure agreement can save you a ton of money if something happens to the home after you sell it. No matter the problems, it is best, to be honest upfront to cover yourself in case of future issues. Termites can be a big deal if the buyer discovers major damage after the sale, but not if you have it listed on the disclosure agreement.
Disclosure Agreements May Include Termite Clause
For example, Arizona has a disclosure agreement report that states the seller is required to disclose any defects or other conditions in the property being sold. Some of the details listed on the report include:
- Any appliances and items that remain with the home must be listed and checked for defects
- Condition of fences and gates
- Driveway condition
- Electric system damage
- Foundation damage
- HVAC equipment inspection
- Pest control
- Wood destroying organisms
- Plumbing system damage
- Retaining wall damage
- Roof inspection report
- Sewage system damage
- Wall or floor damage
- Water supply
Pest control and wood-destroying organisms in this report ask the seller if they are aware of any termites, ants, or other wood-destroying pests in the home. It also asks if there has ever been damage that resulted from any of these wood-destroying pests or organisms.
States with the Most Termites
The termite inspection report may be completely separate or included with a pest control report in other states. This is important to include, especially if you are buying or selling a home in a state that has the highest risk of termites, such as:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
Termite Inspection Reports
In a termite inspection report, the inspector will list the outcome as section one or section two. Section one is termite treatment and should be paid for by the seller. Section two is considered as termite prevention and should be paid for by the buyer.
Even if it is not required, the seller may take it upon themselves to pay for the termite inspection and any remedies that need to be done. This is often a good selling point and will prevent any problems that may occur down the road after the home is sold. Nobody wants to sell a home to someone if they know it has a major problem like termite damage.
Is Termite Damage a Deal Breaker?
Termite damage may not be a deal-breaker if the damage is not extensive and has not weakened the house’s structure. If the termites have eaten away support beams and floors, you may want to rethink the deal. Even with treatment, the home may never be structurally sound.
If you are the seller, termite damage does not have to be a big deal if it is not too bad. It is best to offer to fix the issue even if you are not required to by law. When you do this out of good faith, the buyers are more likely to be agreeable to the sale.
How Much Damage Can Termites Do to a Home?
Termites can do a lot of damage to a home. Studies indicate, termites damage more than 600,000 houses each year in the United States. The cost to fix termite damage is estimated at about five billion dollars per year.
Not only do termites eat the wood in the walls and floors, but they can also infest your furniture and even your crops. The damage typically depends on the type of termite and the type of wood in the house. Subterranean termites are the worst and can do a lot of damage in a short amount of time.
There Are Several Different Types of Termites
Although there are actually 45 different species of termites in the United States, they all belong to one of three different types:
- Subterranean termites live in the dirt and build large colonies in the ground, eating fences and trees as well as homes. These are the worst type of termites because they build the biggest nests and can do the most damage.
- Drywood termites just live in wood like dead trees and hardwood floors. They do not need dirt and usually just live in homes. Their colonies are smaller, so although they do a lot of damage, it takes a lot longer.
No matter what kind of termite infestation you have and whether you are the seller or the buyer, it is essential that you get the home treated immediately. The longer you wait, the worse the damage and the more it will cost to fix. If the damage is extensive, it will likely compromise the sale, so if you are the seller, you may have to invest quite a bit of time and money fixing your property first.
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Clare Hoeni on August 30, 2022 at 8:45 pm
BOUGHT A HOUSE AND NEARLY A YEAR LATER FOUND A PROBLEM AROUND OUR FRONT PICTURE WINDOW. TERMITE COMPANY IS SAYING NOT THEIR PROBLEM; PROBABLY CAUSED BY WATER AND THE INSURANCE COMPANY IS SAYING NOT THEIR PROBLEM CAUSED BY TERMITES. IS THERE ANY WAY TO FIGURE THIS OUT SO i AM NOT OUT THE ENTIRE REPAIR COST? WHAT DOES THE TERMITE BOND PROTECT YOU FROM?(Video) Do I need to have termite work done to close escrow?
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Are termite policies worth the money? ›
However, a termite warranty is well worth the cost of protecting your home. The average cost of a termite repair is around $3,000. Some termite repairs can cost tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars, so a warranty is well worth the cost.Which company is best for termites? ›
|Provider Name||Forbes Home Rating||BBB grade|
If a termite inspection is being conducted as part of a real estate transaction, there is usually cost associated because the inspection covers other wood-destroying insects. Typically, the seller will cover any costs associated with the service.How to negotiate termite damage? ›
- Pay for a pest inspection. ...
- Disclose known issues (even if you're not required to by law) ...
- Handle the repairs before you list the home on the market. ...
- Offer a warranty to bring peace of mind to potential buyers.
Termite damage and removal typically aren't covered by your home, condo, or renters insurance policy. Insurance companies consider termite infestations to be preventable, so the cost of termite damage and removal will come out of your pocket.Do termites affect home value? ›
Homeowners are legally required to disclose information about a termite infestation to any potential buyers since this discovery could affect your home's structural integrity and appraisal. Some experts estimate termite damage could reduce the value of your home by approximately 20%.Will termites come back after treatment? ›
The bad news is that in some cases, termites come back after treatment. In fact, they're some of the toughest pests to eliminate from a property.Is spraying for termites effective? ›
While spraying for termites is effective, it wasn't always safe. Contaminated well water, poisoned fishing ponds and indoor air pollution are just some of the effects of spraying chemicals to eliminate termites.What is the preferred treatment for termites? ›
There are several ways to treat termite infestations, but the two most popular termite treatment systems are the Chemical Termite Barriers and In-Ground Baiting Systems.Are termites a deal breaker? ›
So, when is it a deal-breaker? In most cases, termite damage shouldn't be a deal-breaker, unless you find that: — There is an active and unresolved termite infestation. — There is extensive and unresolved structural damage to the home caused by termites.
How much is a pest control inspection? ›
If you choose a quarterly plan, expect to pay between $100 and $300 per treatment. Annual pest control services for small infestations or yearly inspections typically cost around $300 to $500, which is similar to a single-visit treatment.Does seller have to pay for termite treatment in California? ›
In California and most other states, the seller pays for termite inspections. This is because some lenders ask home buyer's for a termite certificate or report prior to funding a loan — no inspection, no loan, no home sale.Can a house with termites be saved? ›
Although termite damage may be reversed through professional repair, homeowners should first call a local termite specialist. Repairs should not be made until a licensed pest professional has confirmed that there are no longer termites present and the risk of further infestation has been eliminated.How long does it take for termites to destroy a house? ›
As the colony matures, they can do significant damage, destroying a home's structure in five to 6 years. The Formosan termite is one type of problematic subterranean termite, and they reproduce so rapidly that they can destroy a home in as little as one year.What is the most destructive termite? ›
They build distinctive "mud tubes" to gain access to food sources and to protect themselves from open air. Subterranean termites are by far the most destructive species in the U.S.
Your house can literally collapse from damage caused by termite infestation. And, in some cases, you may not even know the termites are there until the damage is obvious – including your house actually collapsing.How much property damage do termites cause? ›
Termites damage approximately 600,000 homes in the U.S. each year. U.S. residents spend an estimated $5 billion annually to control termites and repair termite damage.What are signs of termites? ›
- Discolored or drooping drywall.
- Peeling paint that resembles water damage.
- Wood that sounds hollow when tapped.
- Small, pinpoint holes in drywall.
- Buckling wooden or laminate floor boards.
- Tiles loosening from the added moisture termites can introduce to your floor.
- Excessively squeaky floorboards.
Old and antique homes have a unique charm that tends to attract us to them. But research suggests that the possibility of termite infestation in older homes is higher than in newly constructed homes. So, yes, older homes are at a higher risk of termite infestation.Should I buy a house with signs of termites? ›
Trey McCallie, principal broker at Urban Toolbox Real Estate in Lexington, KY, suggests that a buyer can purchase a home with termite damage as long as it's not in the floor joists or any of the main supports of the home. The damage is considered minimal if it's primarily on the surface of wood structures.
Do all houses have some termites? ›
Do most homes in California have termites? Unfortunately, 90% of California is located in a heavy-risk Termite Infestation Probability Zone. If you live in northern California your home is at moderate risk for termite damage.How many times a year should you treat for termites? ›
How often should I treat my home for termites? To avoid infestations, homeowners should have their home inspected annually for termites. Termite treatments last anywhere from 5 to 13 years depending on the type of treatment used and any signs of current activity.How long does it take to stop seeing termites after treatment? ›
Termite bait stations can take months to work, while liquid treatments can take anywhere from a few days to several months.What happens to dead termites after treatment? ›
Once a house is fumigated, the termites die, but their pellets remain inside their hollowed out galleries. Unless all those galleries are found and repaired, the pellets may sift down over time much like sand in an hourglass.What month is best to spray for termites? ›
Winter is the most important season for termite control. If you already have termites, it's imperative you have been them exterminated as soon as possible. If not, then this is an excellent time to fortify your home and prevent future infestations.What smell does termites hate? ›
Clemson University scientists reported that 'Termites hate smells of cedarwood, geranium, and tea tree oil. It has also been found that clove bud, cinnamon, and garlic oils can also repel termites.What is the safest termite treatment? ›
Termidor is approved by the EPA and is safe after it dries. Termidor SC – is a non-repellent, undetectable chemical technology treatment that is picked up and spread by termites.How many treatments does it take to get rid of termites? ›
That being said, as a general rule, a termite spray or liquid treatment will typically begin killing termites within a day or two. If you choose to use bait stations, the process might take a little longer to begin. After that, it's all up to the size of the colony, but they'll rarely last more than four or five days.Do termite bait stations really work? ›
Bait stations can provide an effective, long-term solution for termite issues. While the bait is designed to act slowly, it does allow for the destruction of all castes of termites, including reproductives, soldiers and workers.Can a house get termites twice? ›
Unfortunately, the answer is yes. However, there are ways that you can work to proactively prevent another termite infestation; our team can help you understand the steps you should take to keep these critters from returning.
Do termites always return to ground? ›
Termites are quite resilient and will always find a way back into your home given a chance. However, usually, it should take at least five years before termites can finally find their way back into your home.Do termites fly into the house? ›
Yes. Swarmers from colonies infesting homes may get trapped indoors after surfacing and fly around looking for an exit. Additionally, since termites are attracted to light, the pests may congregate near open or loosely sealed windows and doors and end up inside.How much does it cost to spray a house with pest control? ›
|Payment Time Frame||Average Cost|
- Between $550 and $800 per year for the general pest control plan (includes satisfaction guarantee and quarterly or monthly service)
- $2,000+ for ongoing termite inspection and prevention plan.
- $500 to $1,500 for bed bug removal — keep in mind that you might need multiple visits.
Pest control qualifies as an ordinary and necessary expense. If you own a business, the same idea applies. Pest control would qualify as an ordinary and necessary expense, so you could deduct the cost under maintenance.Who pays for termite damage when buying a home in California? ›
In most cases, termite prevention is paid for by the buyers, and termite treatment is paid for by the seller in the closing costs. However, if the seller listed the house “as is,” the buyers are responsible for all termite damage and future prevention costs.Do most houses in California have termites? ›
They're everywhere! Termites are active across the state of California, from Redding to San Francisco, down to Fresno, Bakersfield, Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Diego. Both subterranean and drywood termites are well-known for damaging homes in California.What conditions do termites hate? ›
Sunlight. Termites hate sunlight. In fact, they can die from too much sunlight and heat exposure. If you suspect that a piece of furniture has termites, drag it to the yard to bake in the sun for a bit.Can termites destroy a whole house? ›
In rare cases termite damage can be so extensive that the home is completely demolished. In addition to the structural repairs that have to be made, cosmetic repairs also have to be made. Termites can cause discoloration and other damage to sheetrock, flooring and paint which will also need repair or replacement.What time of year do termites do the most damage? ›
Spring is the swarming season for most subterranean termites. Most species of subterranean termites swarm during the spring and summer months, typically on a warm day with calm winds after a rainfall.
How fast do termites spread in the house? ›
Termites take a very short time to spread. Within a few days, they can multiply to what's considered an infestation. Homeowners need to take every percaussion possible, and be sure to act quickly in order to protect their homes.How long can you live with termites? ›
According to studies, workers and soldiers can survive an average of one to two years, while queen termites may live for over a decade when the climate conditions are favorable. Even if the long-living queen dies, queens from other colonies and the secondary reproductive termites will continue to reproduce.What is a termites worst enemy? ›
Insects, Nematodes and Arachnids. The greatest hunters of termites are their slightly larger insect cousins, the ants. Megaponera analis is an ant species that only eats termites, which it does by raiding termite colonies for hours at a time.What is worse than termites? ›
Powderpost beetles are second only to termites in their ability to damage dry, seasoned wood. And yet, customers often receive conflicting opinions about whether the insects and/or damage they are seeing is indeed due to powderpost beetles.How do you know if termite damage is extensive? ›
Outward signs of termite damage include buckling wood, swollen floors and ceilings, areas that appear to be suffering from slight water damage and visible mazes within walls or furniture. Termite infestations also can exude a scent similar to mildew or mold.Do I really need termite protection in Florida? ›
These insects thrive in our warm environment, and Florida has become home to several invasive species that can cause significant damage in a shorter period of time, compared with native subterranean termites. Subterranean termite protection should be high on your list of home-maintenance priorities.What are the benefits of termite protection? ›
- Peace of mind. Termites are destructive and can easily cause thousands of dollars in damage to your home right under your knows. ...
- Minimize damage. Your typical colony of termites can eat through a foot of wood in just a few months. ...
- Keeping an eye on other pests.
In summary, baits are useful and effective tools for managing termite infestations. Regardless of which product/system is used, they will not work by simply hammering some stations into the ground and walking away.Do I need termite protection in South Carolina? ›
The cost of termite damage to homes amounts to more money annually than damage from natural disasters. Unfortunately, most homeowners insurance does not cover damages from termites in South Carolina. This is why it pays to have your home protected before termites become an issue.Does the buyer or seller pay for the termite inspection in Florida? ›
In most instances, the home buyer is responsible for paying for the presale pest inspection, which typically costs about $150 – $250. However, some sellers will include a pest inspection as part of their seller concessions as a way to attract more potential buyers.
Who pays for termite treatment in Florida? ›
The property seller is almost always responsible for paying for termite inspections. If past or present termite activity is found, the seller is usually also responsible for covering treatment either up-front or in closing costs.Does homeowners insurance cover termite damage in Florida? ›
No, homeowners insurance in Florida does not cover termite damage. Termites are considered preventable pests, and any damages they cause would be the responsibility of the homeowner to repair or replace.What is the best termite prevention method? ›
Fix leaks immediately. Keep vents free from blockage, including plants. Ensure that trees and shrubs are not planted too close to the structure and do not allow them to grow against exposed wood surfaces. Do not pile or store firewood or wood debris next to the house.What is best termite protection? ›
- Taurus SC: Most Popular.
- Bifen XTS: Best Fast-acting.
- Spectracide Terminate: Best Bait.
- Termidor Foam: Best Direct Chemical Treatment.
- BioAdvanced Termite Killer: Best for DIY.
CYCLODIENES (CHLORDANE, HEPTACHLOR, ALDRIN, AND DIELDRIN)
Acute or chronic exposure of humans to cyclodienes can produce central nervous system symptoms characterized by headache, blurred vision, dizziness, involuntary muscle movements, tremors, and seizures.
Post-treatment termite swarms are not uncommon and may occur up to around four weeks after an effective treatment. The goal of termiticide use is to create mortality among the workers and the other caste members of the termite colony, weaken the colony, and eventually eliminate it.Which is better termite bait or liquid treatment? ›
The best defense against termites is a combination of liquid barriers and bait traps. The bait traps work to destroy the colony, while the liquid barrier will prevent new termites from reaching your home in the meantime.Is termite dusting better than baiting? ›
At STC we generally use dusting as a method of reducing termite numbers in an infested building prior to the application of a protective chemical application. If we are serious about complete colony control we use termite baiting programs, which are far more predictable and consistently effective than dusting.How often do you need to do termite barrier? ›
A high-quality chemical termite barrier can cover an average house of 70 linear metres. This type of barrier is designed to last up to a maximum of 8 years.Are termites a big problem in South Carolina? ›
South Carolina is one of the most active areas for termites in the US. The climate of the southeast United States contributes to active termite swarms throughout the year, particularly in the spring and summer.
Are termite letters required in South Carolina? ›
In SC, a CL-100 letter is required by your lender to close on any home. What Is It? The official and technical name for a termite letter, or CL-100, is the Official South Carolina Wood Infestation Report. It is advised that all homebuyers obtain this report rather than the seller.