Campus News - June 30, 2001

Buyers beware of termites

By Richard “Bugman” Fagerlund, Physical Plant Department

Termites can be a problem in New Mexico and they occasionally turn up on campus and have to be treated. With that in mind, the information below will help staff and faculty who are buying a home in New Mexico.

Wood Destroying Insect Reports aren’t mandatory in New Mexico as they are in most states, so when you buy a home it will not automatically be inspected for termites unless it is a VA or FHA sale. You will have to ask your realtor to arrange for a termite inspection. Normally the seller will pick the company to do the inspection since they are liable for any findings. This may not be in your best interest as a buyer. The seller will often pick a company who will do a cursory inspection or who, if they find something, will do an incomplete or “spot” treatment. You should have your realtor arrange for another inspection by a company of your choice to confirm the findings of the seller’s inspection company.

You will also want to make sure the inspecting company is qualified to inspect for other wood destroying insects such as false powder post beetles, anobiid beetles and black-horned pine borers, all of which occasionally damage homes in our area. Don’t hesitate to ask questions of anyone doing an inspection on your new home.

If termites are found it is up to the seller to get the home treated.

If you are buying or selling a home, or if you are concerned with termites in your present home and have questions, please contact me at or 277-9904, or check out

The University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, New Mexico USA
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