Smart home sellers opt for pest inspection

Who pays to repair defects depends on market

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No one wants to buy a house that's riddled with termites. So, a termite inspection -- technically an inspection for damage by any kind of wood-destroying organisms -- is usually done at some point during the course of a home sale. Loosely referred to as a termite inspection, an inspection for wood pests covers such organisms as dry rot, fungus, wood-boring beetles, carpenter ants -- to name a few -- in addition to termites. Who pays to repair the damage varies, often depending on market conditions. For example, during soft markets that favor buyers, sellers are usually more willing to pay for pest repairs than they are when houses sell quickly. However, in a hot seller's market, buyers are more likely to overlook these defects and buy properties in their "as is" condition, without asking the sellers to pay for repairs. Even if a seller doesn't have to do pest repairs in order to sell, there are times when it makes sense to do so. Buyers look favorably on a house that has li...