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WDO Inspections
Is a WDO required?
When obtaining a mortgage or a mortgage guarantee to finance the purchase of a home, you most likely will be required to obtain a professional WDO inspection by the bank, the mortgage company, or the guarantor (FHA, VA, HUD, etc.)

What exactly is a WDO inspection?
Although commonly referred to as a "termite inspection", WDO stands for "wood-destroying organisms", and a proper WDO inspection looks for evidence of infestation by termites (both subterranean and drywood types), wood decay, wood-devouring beetles and  wood decaying fungus as well as evidence of past infestations, damage to wood, or conditions conducive to infestations, and evidence of past treatments.

What is the importance of getting a good WDO inspection?
First off, when you are buying a home, the WDO inspector is working for you - not the real estate agent, and not the seller. You are the one who will be stuck with the bill if the home you buy turns out to have a termite or other WDO problem that is not detected during the pre-sale inspection.

Understand that a proper WDO inspection costs money. Credentialed WDO inspection companies spend thousands of dollars a year on continuing training, certifications, inspection equipment, and insurance in order to provide you with the best inspection possible. So be very suspicious of companies offering cut-rate or "quickie" inspections. As with anything else, you generally get what you pay for.

Too many people look at the pre-sale WDO inspection as an annoyance imposed by their bank. But the reality is that termites and other wood-destroying insects cost homeowners hundreds of millions of dollars every year in treatment costs and damage repair. In view of this, it's obvious that a proper and thorough inspection by a qualified WDO inspector is always the buyer's best interest, and should be looked upon as an important part of the home-buying process.

A proper termite and WDO inspection consists of several steps, which may not necessarily occur in this order: An inspection of the exterior of the home, looking for signs of termite activity as well as conditions conducive to termite and other WDO infestations (such as wood that is too close to the ground, dead tree stumps by the house, improper grading, leaky gutters or downspouts, or tree branches overhanging or touching the home). The inspector will also look for evidence of infestation by other wood-destroying insects.

An inspection of the interior of the home, with special emphasis on the basement, garage, door and window frames, and other areas that are particularly prone to WDO infestation. This part of the inspection will be both visual and physical, and typically involves visually inspecting, tapping, probing, and sounding susceptible wood. The inspector will also be looking for live termites or other insects, dead termite "swarmers," other evidence of infestation (tubing, frass, signs of prior treatments, etc), damaged wood, and conditions conducive to infestation (such as excessive moisture levels).

A detailed written summary of the inspection results. This includes a standardized inspection form developed by the NPMA and adopted by various state and federal agencies, and may sometimes include additional documents attached by the inspector to clarify the inspection findings.

When evidence of a past of present WDO infestation, damage due to an infestation, or conditions conducive to infestation are found, the inspector will usually attach his or her remediation recommendations and/or an estimate for treatment. What is a WDO Inspection?A Wood Destroying Organism (WDO) inspection informs sellers, prospective buyers and lenders about any termite infestations and damage to the home due to wood pests and wood rot.

Why do I need an inspection for wood insects?
The soil, humidity and temperatures of Florida combine to make it the perfect environment for termites and wood rot to thrive. The damage they cause is not always visible on the surface.

Also, a Lender may require a "Clean WDO" as a condition of a loan.

Who does the WDO Inspection?
A WDO inspection is conducted by a certified pest control professional, also known as an Exterminator.

What does the WDO Inspection report?
The inspection includes a check for termites, other wood destroying insects, and wood rot. Also, the WDO inspector typically identifies conditions that could lead to a future termite infestation, including:
  • Firewood and other debris stored against the home.
  • Wood siding in contact with the soil.
  • Landscape grading that does not slope away from the foundation.
  • Mulching materials, landscape timbers and deteriorated wood near the home.
  • Cracks in the foundation that allow termites to enter
  • Leaks in the plumbing that attract pests and can lead to wood rot
What happens after the WDO?
Inspection results are reported to the purchaser of the WDO report. Necessary repairs are made, and the WDO inspector makes a return visit to re-inspect and provide documentation to support the acceptable status of the property.
Call Southeast Termite & Pest Control, the leading pest control company in the Greater Jacksonville and North Florida area, to receive exceptional pest control services.

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