Friday, January 9, 2015

Buyer Beware.......of TERMITES

I've been helping people in and out of homes in Southern California for over a dozen years now. That entire time we've had a Wood Destroying Pest Addendum generally part of the purchase agreement. Sometimes with the distressed properties we knew they wouldn't pay for anything so it was just left out of the contract.

The WPA stipulates at the initial offering, who is going to pay for what when it comes to anything that can destroy wood. Termites, fungus, wood-rot, and such. Houses in California are generally made out of wood & stucco so it makes sense, right?

Well, for years, there has been no big deal. Sellers pay for Section One items, any Section Two items, if buyer or lender wants it done, buyer generally pays for it.

Section one are active problems. Something destroying the wood right now. Section two are usually items that can cause a problem in the future or an old water stain that buyers lender (usually FHA or VA) wants resolved before closing escrow.

Now, that lovely addendum that all Realtors in my area are used to? It's completely gone. Not even able to add it on at all. Nope, no way, no how.

So what do you do? You have to have an agent that remembers to write in that seller is to pay for inspection, if you want an inspection. You can hopefully negotiate at the onset that the same type of terms will happen. Section one for seller, section two for buyer. If you forget, well if your Realtor forgets (or isn't savvy), you'll be working it out after the fact. Buyer will end up paying for the inspection possibly. The items that come up on the report will have to be negotiated later, just like the home inspection report findings.

A couple of things to think about. SELLERS ~ Consider doing a termite inspection before you even go into escrow. BUYERS ~ Make sure the Realtor you are working with is knowledgeable regarding this huge, could be costly, change.

Don't let this little bugger ruin your deal!

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