Most Common Termite-Related Delays in Escrow

Top Realtor Rookie MistakeIn California, you can’t spell escrow without three T’s: Tears, Taxes, and Termites.

Unless you are making an all-cash offer on a property and are willing to buy as-is without any inspections or repairs whatsoever, chances are that a termite company will be involved at some point in your escrow transaction.

The most common yet avoidable mistake we see repeated time and again is waiting until the escrow process has advanced before ordering a termite inspection. Doing this can cause major disruptions to your escrow transaction.

In California, you can’t spell escrow without three T’s: Tears, Taxes, and Termites. Unless you are making an all-cash offer on a property and are willing to buy as-is without any inspections or repairs whatsoever, chances are that a termite company will be involved at some point in your escrow transaction.

The most common yet avoidable mistake we see repeated time and again is waiting until the escrow process has advanced before ordering a termite inspection. Doing this can cause major disruptions to your escrow transaction.

Order the termite inspection ASAP:

If a mortgage lender is involved in the transaction, at the very minimum, that lender is going to want a thorough Wood Destroying Organism inspection and report on the property to ensure the property they are lending on is structurally sound and not at risk of future structural failures (see section I vs section II).

California’s Pest Control Police, formally known as the Structural Pest Control Board published this to give consumers general information about termite inspection, ethical, and legal practices attached to said inspections and subsequent reports.

California’s Pest Control Police, formally known as the Structural Pest Control Board published this helpful document to give consumers general information about termite inspection, ethical, and legal practices attached to said inspections and subsequent reports.

The document is helpful in clarifying common misconceptions and addressing some FAQ. However, it does give one piece of commonly misconstrued advise.

In the subsection titled “When is a pest inspection report required” there is a sentence that says the following:
“It is advisable for a buyer to get an inspection report as CLOSE AS POSSIBLE to the close of Escrow.”
I am not sure if this is bad advice, or commonly misunderstood advice but the practice of waiting as close as possible to the close of escrow is BAD NEWS.

What the state is trying to say is “Hey, Brosef Buyer. Termite companies are not responsible for new termite issues that are discovered AFTER the initial inspection. For that reason, we recommend having termite inspections done later when there have been plenty of chances to expose as much potential termite problems as possible.”

However, from our experience, it seems like people heard “Hey, Buyer. Your Government here. Go ahead and wait until the day before escrow is going to close to order your termite inspection.”

The advice Uncle Sam is giving only makes sense if you are 100% sure that the termite inspection you order will find zero issues to deal with before the close of escrow.

Let’s just say, for example, that minor termite issues are found at the time of a termite inspection you ordered just two days before the close of escrow.

What’s the likelihood that:

 1. The report is filed with escrow

2. It’s reviewed and returned by the lender with their conditions

3. The buyer and seller agree on who pays for this additional work

4. The work is scheduled with the termite company

5. The termite company completes the work, then clears and certifies the work

6. The certification is filed through escrow

7. And finally, the lender receives and accepts the certification

All this within just a few working days? Just like Ted Cruz’ presidency, ‘Not Gonna Happen’.

In short, don’t wait to order the termite inspection. Order the inspection as soon as you open escrow.

 

If you want to wait on ordering the necessary termite work until all inspections have been done and you can decide how you want to plan and prioritize work, that’s great. But, don’t wait until the very end of escrow to finding out you have termite issues to deal with.

Having your termite inspection report early in the process with enough time to plan, prepare, and budget will keep your escrow on-track. Your tears will be tears of joy when that transaction proceeds smoothly and on time.

We continue to be Southern California’s preferred termite and pest control service, provider.

Schedule a termite inspection with one of our local termite inspectors at www.termitepro.us or Contact us at 1(844)GOT.ANTS.

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