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Old 08-02-2012, 01:15 PM
 
19 posts, read 139,892 times
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Hi all,

I am a first time homebuyer, currently under contract for a home in East Nashville. The home inspection went fine for the most part (little issues here and there), but the termite inspection found infestation in, and damage to, the floor joists (I have uploaded photos taken by the inspector, so the damage can be seen). The inspector did not say that anything needed to be repaired. So, my question is, should I walk away from this house?

Last edited by Negasong; 08-02-2012 at 02:30 PM..
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Old 08-02-2012, 01:25 PM
 
Location: Brentwood, Tennessee
39,047 posts, read 37,695,377 times
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Based on those photos, no.

The photos are not very good quality, but if the entire joist was eaten clean through and the house was sitting on a pile of sawdust, then you should consider walking away. This looks like something similar to what we found in our termite inspection of our 30-yr-old ranch house. We got a termite contract and have not had any problems since.

How old is the home?

How many joists did the inspector say had damage?

Did the current homeowner have a pest control contract?

Are there interior signs of settling, like cracks around doors & windows or "soft spots" in the floor when you walk on them?

I don't think what you're showing in the photos is a fatal flaw, but you should post this question in the Real Estate forum and see what those guys say.
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Old 08-02-2012, 01:37 PM
 
19 posts, read 139,892 times
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Thanks for the replay, Wmsn4Life - much appreciated!

The home is 59 years old (1953)

As far as how many joists have damage, I'm waiting for him to call me. My agent spoke to him and said that it was only a small area that was actually damaged. I'll know more when I speak to him myself. The report states:

"Shelter tubes in floor joists in crawl at right and front left of home."

"Damage to floor joists and headerboard in crawl at right rear of home"

He also found evidence of previous treatment which was not in the property disclosure.

As far as I know the current homeowner does not have a pest control contract.

I didn't feel any soft spots on the floor when walking around, nor are there any cracks around doors and windows.

I will take your advice and post this in the real estate forum, and I will include the answers to the questions you had. Thanks again for taking the time to respond - it really is very much appreciated!
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:35 AM
 
Location: NC
6,034 posts, read 7,187,387 times
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Termites must return to the burrow/ground every 24 hours.... getting a full treatment with termador and the foam etc, will most likely kill them off.

Damage that high though, leads one to believe the termites have been gnawing on stuff there for years.
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Old 08-03-2012, 12:45 PM
 
Location: North Texas
23,599 posts, read 31,152,740 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Suncc49 View Post
Termites must return to the burrow/ground every 24 hours.... getting a full treatment with termador and the foam etc, will most likely kill them off.

Damage that high though, leads one to believe the termites have been gnawing on stuff there for years.
I've heard of people having termite damage in attics.

THAT'S something I would walk away from!
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Old 08-03-2012, 01:27 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
126 posts, read 270,004 times
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Absolutely not. You are looking at homes that are very old. I have worked with a lot of old homes and home inspectors. If you are going to continue pursuing a purchase of an older home you will continue you to see either previous damage from termites or in some cases present damage. Moisture attracts termites and this is the south where it is humid..while I am not privy to that specific home or inspection report, It is nothing to worry about. It can be treated and if you choose to do so, you can put a termite treatment plan in place with a pest control company..good luck.
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Old 08-03-2012, 06:04 PM
 
Location: Florida -
8,238 posts, read 9,998,349 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Negasong View Post
Hi all,

I am a first time homebuyer, currently under contract for a home in East Nashville. The home inspection went fine for the most part (little issues here and there), but the termite inspection found infestation in, and damage to, the floor joists (I have uploaded photos taken by the inspector, so the damage can be seen). The inspector did not say that anything needed to be repaired. So, my question is, should I walk away from this house?
This is a 'buyer beware' situation with no clear-cut answer ... yet. Before you walk/or don't walk, you need to get an in-depth exterminator evaluation and estimate of the cost to deal with existing and potential damage. Get two estimates so you can decide in your own mind just how significant the damage and repair could be. Then, make an informed decision. -- That decision may be to negotiate the cost of repairs. Additionally, you might ask the owner to provide a 'termite bond' that would protect you from a possible near-term infestation.
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Old 08-04-2012, 12:05 AM
 
Location: Out there somewhere...
38,684 posts, read 45,045,110 times
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If you're financing the home the mortgage company would require that the damage be restored to it's original condition and a termite report guaranteeing at least 5 year termite protection before a loan could proceed. The owner would have to take care of that problem. If you're paying cash then it's an as is situation between you and the seller.
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Old 08-04-2012, 08:44 AM
 
19 posts, read 139,892 times
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Thank you for the replies, everyone. The seller will have to pay for the treatment if this is going to move forward, and the company doing the treatment will have me under a one year contract, renewable at $125 a year.

No termite damage in the attic, BigDGeek - thank goodness.

mip206 - my agent pretty much said the same thing - it's not uncommon for older houses in TN to have termites. I'm not so worried about the insects, as I know they can be taken care of, as I am about the damage that has already been done.

jghorton - the treatment is going to cost around $600 which the seller will have to pay, but yes, I think it's worth $250 to get a structural engineer in there to see what the damage to the joists looks like.

nitram - I am financing 80% - I'll have to talk to my mortgage broker about that - thanks for letting me know!
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