Lauren Bunting Broker MD & DE

Protect yourself from termites while buying a home

Thursday, September 30, 2021, Lauren Bunting

All homebuyers know they should get a home inspection, but a common misconception is that your home inspector will also cover inspecting for termites. While home inspectors make a notation in the home inspection report if they see termite activity or if they see prior termite damage to structural components, they do not perform a full termite inspection.

In addition, termite inspections are addressed under its own paragraph within the local contract of sale used in Worcester County, which reads:

WOOD DESTROYING INSECT INSPECTION: Buyer, at Buyer’s expense, (if VA, then at Seller’s expense) is authorized to obtain a written report on the state regulated form from a Maryland licensed pest control company that, based on a careful visual inspection, there is no evidence of termite or other wood-destroying insect infestation in the residence or within three

(3) feet of the residence; and damage due to previous infestation has been repaired. The provisions of this paragraph also shall apply to: (1) the garage or within three (3) feet of the garage (whether attached or detached); (2) any outbuildings located within three feet of the residence or garage; and (3) a maximum of ten (10) linear feet of the nearest portion of a

fence on Seller's Property within three feet of the residence or garage.


The contract of sale further specifies how any current/present infestation is to be handled, and calls for sellers to pay up to 2 percent of the purchase price for any treatments or repairs. If the cost of treatment and repair of any termite damage exceeds 2 percent of the purchase price, a seller may cancel a contract, unless the buyer chooses to pay for the cost of treatment and repairs exceeding 2 percent of the purchase price. Note that if the buyer is using a VA loan, the seller must pay for the cost of the termite inspection as well as any repairs that might be needed.


Lauren Bunting is an Associate Broker with Atlantic Shores Sotheby’s International Realty in Ocean City, Maryland.

Lauren Bunting is a Broker with Keller Williams Realty of Delmarva in Ocean City, Maryland.

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