VA requirements

VA Loan Reader Questions: Termite Inspections

November 20, 2018

VA Loan Reader Questions: Termite Inspections


A reader asks, “We are currently refinancing our home – and we are using the VA process. They are requesting us to get a termite (WDO) inspection. My question is: Does the VA require this termite inspection? We live in Southern California.”

According to the Phoenix VA Regional Loan Center, “In order to achieve maximum assurance that a home is free of any infestation, the Phoenix Regional Loan Center (RLC) is re-issuing its policy on Subterranean Termite Treatment. Our policy is based on a review of the Termite Infestation Probability Zones (TIP Zones). The Phoenix RLC has determined that Arizona, California, and Nevada are located within two Termite Infestation Probability Zones.”

The Phoenix VA RLC adds:

♦ California is located in the “very heavy” Termite Infestation Probability Zone #1 (TIP Zone 1).
♦ Arizona and Nevada are located in the “heavy” Termite Infestation Probability Zone #2 (TIP Zone 2).
♦ TIP Zones 1 and 2 require EPA registered termite soil treatment, wood treatment, or termite baiting system.

The Phoenix VA Regional Loan Center has jurisdiction over the areas mentioned above, so homes in Arizona, California, and Nevada to be purchased with a VA loan would be subject to the following rules for refinance loans, as found on the Phoenix VA Regional Loan Center official site:

“A clear pest inspection is required for all homes previously owner-occupied or fully complete for one year or more, especially if the appraiser notes past or potential infestation problems.

♦ While VA does not require a cleared termite report on a VA Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan (IRRRL), the underwriter may impose the condition at their discretion.

♦ Purchases and other refinances must have a COMPLETE report that is not over 90 days old at time of closing. (All structures within the legal boundaries of the property must be inspected including garages. Exceptions are minor detached structures such as a small shed, where no value was allowed by the appraiser).

♦ Form NPMA-33, Wood Destroying Insect Inspection Report, will be valid for 90 days from the date of the inspection and is required to be completed, and included, on all existing cases where termite inspections are required.”

More information can be found on this downloadable bulletin available from the VA.

Do you have questions about VA home loans? Ask us in the comments section.

  1. Allen Markovich

    I am refinancing my VA loan (not IRRRL). The rules are pretty clear for a purchase, but who pays for the pest inspection on a VA refinance? Thanks!

  • Joe Wallace

    That may depend on the housing market where you are located. Best advice is to contact the VA Regional Loan Center for advice in your specifc area. Find yours at

  • Vicente Blanco

    Can my VA loan refinance be approved even their is a present of termite as a result from wood inspection report?

  • LT

    I'm interested in the Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan (IRRRL). I currently have a 30 yr fixed rate VA loan. How do I go about getting the new IRRRL loan? Is it a difficult process? Which lenders offer the IRRRL loan or is there a listing of lenders?

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