Do Not Let Your Dream Home Become a Nightmare Because of Unwanted Guests

Pest Inspection Requirements for VA Loans

When using a VA Home Loan for a purchase or refinance, a Termite or Pest Inspection is REQUIRED priorpest inspection and termite report requirements for va home loans to closing.  The only exception to this requirement is when refinancing with a VA streamline IRRRL loan to lower the rate, term, and/or payment.  VA basically looks for veterans to have a home free of safety and termite infestation issues, appraises for at least the purchase price, among other things.

Some very popular questions we receive are:

1) Is a termite inspection required

2) Are the termite inspection report findings an issue or not.

How Long is a Pest Inspection Good For?

The length of time before a pest inspection expires varies between lenders.  Our pest inspections or termite reports are good for 90 days from date of inspection.  This is much longer than the typical 30 days required by many.

So below we mention important tips.  This includes requirements that may be needed based on certain issues mentioned on a Termite Inspection Report:

Tips To Remember About Termite Inspections and VA loan:

  • When using VA to purchase a home, the homebuyer may not pay for the termite inspection under any circumstances.  So that means that the seller, realtor, or mortgage company must pay for this inspection as long as it is not the home buyer
  • A termite inspection is always required on a purchase when using a home loan
  • On a VA refinance (not IRRRL), a termite inspection is required & may be  paid by the borrower since it isn’t a purchase
  • Generally the pest inspection must be within 30 days of the closing
  • If the home is new construction, the seller or builder must provide proof of the termite treatment type (bait system, wood, or soil) and form HUD-NPCA-99-A must be completed and signed by the builder.  Also form HUD-NPCA-99-B if the builder used the soil treatment method.

Pest Inspectors are Looking For:

  • Signs of active or previous infestation of wood destroying pests
  • Signs of the house being treated before
  • Areas conducive to subterranean termites
  • Moisture issues
  • Damage caused by termites and/or moisture

Issues to look for on Termite / Pest Inspection Reports and common requirements to remedy the situation:  Typically the seller is expected to pay for any treatment or repairs mentioned below as it will be very difficult to sell the house or for a buyer to purchase the house with these issues.

  • Evidence of “active infestation”:  If there is active infestation, the house must be treated by a professional and provide proof prior to closing.  The inspector will note the areas which need to be treated
  • Visible evidence of previous treated infestation which now appears to be inactive:  This is ok as long since there is not active infestation.  Just like above, the inspector will state the location of the previously treated areas.
  • Areas are conducive to termite were noted:  Make sure that this or the remarks section is read thoroughly.  Common remarks are:
    • Wood debris in crawl space – It is a good idea to keep pieces of wood from underneath a house
    • Areas of the house containing wood are in contact with the ground – by the wood touching the ground, it could cause easier infestation.  This is not a cause in need of correction and is typically just a note to the homeowner to watch
    • Signs of wood destroying fungi on floor or crawl space – This will typically need to be corrected prior to closing
    • Moisture readings at excessive levels such as above 20% – This is subject to underwriter’s decision but typically over 20% can be an issue.  This can be remedied with a dehumidifier and often a moisture barrier is recommended.  A moisture barrier is a sheet of plastic covering the ground in the crawl space which keeps excessive moisture from damaging the house.  If it is the time of the year to open the vents under the house, this should be considered as well
    • Damage to the house by water, pest infestation, or fungi – These items would need to be corrected and then verified by a professional licensed contractor or possibly even a structural engineer depending on the level of the damage.

Keep in mind that each report and each scenario can be different so requirements could vary as well.  The most important thing will be that the buyer and their representatives (lender, attorney, and realtor) feel comfortable with the findings and repairs (if the findings required repairs).  It is always a good idea to show these reports to all parties early in case there are issues that need correcting.

Other types of loans may not require a pest inspection unless the appraiser mentions potential issues or if the purchase contract states a pest or termite inspection is required.  In the end, it is a small amount of money to spend to feel more comfortable about the home structure.

If you are or think you may be eligible for a VA home loan to finance up to 100% of the purchase price of a new primary residence, contact our Team Move VA Home Loan experts today.  We can answer all of your questions to help you feel more at ease when purchasing your dream home so it is not a nightmare!

The main thought to remember is to hire a trusted, experienced, and licensed professional to inspect your investment!

Related Resources:

Written By: Russell Smith

Sign up to receive the latest in mortgage news.