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REAL ESTATE: Realtors react to termite inspection change

REAL ESTATE: Realtors react to termite inspection change

REAL ESTATE: Realtors react to termite inspection change

Staff mug of business reporter Debra Gruszecki.

Staff mug of business reporter Debra Gruszecki.


A recent story in The Press-Enterprise over changes in the California Association of Realtors’ purchase agreement over wood-destroying pest inspection provisions drew mixed reactions.

Charlotte McKenzie, real estate agent with Coldwell Banker Armstrong Properties in Riverside, said she was concerned consumers would interpret the change as a move by agents to dodge termite inspections in a sales transaction.

That’s not the case, she said.

A good real estate agent will advise sellers to get a termite inspection before they put their home on the market, McKenzie said. “If you have a $ 30,000 to $ 40,000 termite repair bill and you’re not aware of it until you’re already in escrow, you should hire a new Realtor.”

The Feb. 22 story, “Termites get a pass from Realtors,” pointed out that California Association of Realtors’ sales purchase forms were simplified to streamline the process and bridge a sticking point. The original form had sellers blindly agreeing to pay for repairs before an inspection and before learning the extent of damage or cost for remediation.

William Lopez, a senior data analyst with CoreLogic, in a Facebook post, said he appreciated the work by the association to remove ambiguities. “If two forms can be cut down to one, and still keep its integrity, then that’s a bonus to all,” Lopez said.

Gloria Young of Park Place Real Estate Co. gave the story a thumb’s up. “The vast majority of agents do not strategize the details of a listing and/or purchase contract past the purchase price,” she wrote.

Young’s email offered these tips to avoid the “terror” of committing a seller to an unknown termite finding:

�• Sellers should get a termite report before listing a property. Agents who disagree with the new form can simply write into the purchase contract the point that the seller is to pay the “Section One” findings. That way, they don’t have to sort out the question of who pays what two weeks into escrow.

�• “If you get an offer on a listing that wants a termite report with a clearance and you have not done one with the listing process, counter the offer and cap the seller’s exposure to a certain amount,” Young’s email said. “If termite findings are over that amount, you can negotiate. The seller can say ‘No,’ without a penalty.”


Southwest Riverside County Association of Realtors recently collected more than 2,000 cans of food for its Hearts for Hunger Canned Food Drive campaign.

Eighteen real estate offices stepped up to stock five local food pantries. Top collectors were Realty One Group, with 453 cans of food; Exit Alliance Realty, with 312 cans; and HomeSmart, with 187 cans. If you missed this event, take heart. The association, 26529 Jefferson Ave., Murrieta, accepts canned food items all year.

Contact the writer: 951-368-9423 or dgruszecki@pe.com

Press Enterprise : Real Estate