How To Read a Termite Report

Termite inspection report forms are issued for inspections connected with real estate transaction. The most common form is the NPMA-33, and this is required by lenders and HUD unless there is a state form required by regulations. A termite inspection report typically is a state-issued form or a form created by the National Pest Management Association, the industry organization for pest control companies in the U.S. A termite inspector is required to inspect all visible areas of the home during the inspection. He or she may use infrared technology or other tools to help identify termite activity or moisture problems behind walls. The inspection report will note any areas that are inaccessible to the inspector and would require more invasive techniques to confirm termite activity.

Standard termite inspection forms include the following information:

  • A scale drawing of the home with any activity or damage clearly marked on the drawing.
  • Notes about the home’s construction (e.g., basement, crawlspace, slab and foundation).
  • Explanations of any features that could complicate termite treatment (e.g. water features, wells and plenum air conditioning/heat systems).
  • Information about any structural conditions that should be corrected (e.g. moisture problems or wood-to-ground contact).

Looking Up a Termite Report
Limited information is available for existing termite reports in some states. Check with your state’s office of pest management or structural pest control board to see if records are available on a central Web database.

If you are purchasing a home, the seller is required by law to disclose previous termite damage, activity and treatment. If you want to obtain a copy of a previous termite report, the seller may be able to provide it or you may be able to request it from the company that performed the treatment.

Regardless of your ability to obtain a copy of a previous report, make sure a licensed termite inspector provides a current termite inspection report to identify any recent signs of termite activity.