Buying a house with termite damage or white ant activity

November 26, 2018


What if your Pre Purchase Inspection indicates termite damage or activity? 

1. Don't panic

2. Don't let termite findings stop you from purchasing your dream home. 


You can use information from your inspection to assess the costs to treat the termite activity and repair the termite damage and negotiate the costs in the sale contract.


A Pre Purchase Inspection includes a review for termites, borers and timber decay as well as conditions conducive to these issues. 
If there are active termites on the property it is important to understand the extent of the activity and level of damage. Prior to abandoning your dream purchase for fear of the worst possible scenario, you should consider the associated costs of controlling these pests.

When negotiating price of a house with termite activity you need to take into account the treatment requirements of active termites and the repair costs of damaged areas.

With regard to controlling the active termites, it is best to ensure the treatment is carried out according to Australian Standards. When the seller organises treatment, you need to be clear on your expectations and ensure you receive the treatment report and associated warranty.
Not surprisingly, sellers often arrange for the cheapest possible treatment.
If you intend to buy the property it is important that the termites are eliminated and prevented from returning.

It is important to also understand that it is very hard to tell how “old” termite damage is. Previous damage is an indication that the property is at risk of further termite attack. Always ensure you receive an assessment regarding the level of damage, whether repairs are necessary and how much they would cost.

If termite damage is listed in a Pre Purchase Inspection report, whether currently active or “old” from a previous termite attack, you must also ensure you get a builder or structural engineer to assess the damage and provide quotes for repairs.

The cost of all of these services should always be considered in your purchase negotiations.


For advice on any termite or pest related issue when purchasing your property, we are only a phone call away.


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