VA Loan Rules on Termites
Did you know the VA only requires “pest inspections” on existing construction when there’s a “moderate to heavy” potential for infestation? Something called the Termite Probability Map (located in the International Residential Code) identifies areas with these designators.
But what about an infestation near the “boundary line”? If a property isn’t technically IN a moderate-to-heavy infestation area, is an inspection required? In these cases, if the home seems too close for comfort to an infestation area, the VA has the final say—VA rules state, “Contact the Construction and Valuation Section at the VA Regional Loan Center of jurisdiction to determine if this requirement is applicable.”
When it comes to areas that aren’t designated with moderate-to-heavy infestation potential, an inspection may still be warranted if the appraiser notices signs of wood-destroying pests. After all, just because the home isn’t in a known “termite zone” doesn’t mean a termite issue doesn’t exist. If the appraiser spots the problem, it becomes something that must be corrected as per VA regulations.
When an inspection is needed, the inspection company must file the proper forms with the VA. If pest control is warranted, it must be noted on those forms. Does the buyer want to know what kind of chemicals were used in any required termite abatement? VA rules state while there’s no requirement to disclose the specific chemical, but treatment companies ARE required to list the brand name of the product on the National Pest Control Association forms required. Is this information available to the buyer? Contact your local VA regional center for information. A veteran or current military buyer pre-approved for a VA home loan may be able to discuss concerns or issues with a regional VA rep.