WDI inspections in california

Hello i was wondering if any other california inspectors have had requests for termite inspections to be included with their standard home inspections.

I know you need a license to perform a WDI inspection in california, so obviously its a service i cannot offer.

But it seems like this is sort of a grey area to me. When do my observations of wood rot/damage cross the line?
Are there any things that should be excluded from my report to protect my company?
Should i modify my pre inspection agreement to outline this item more specifically?
Should I subcontract it out? I dont feel like i should.

Any advice on how you guys handle WDI inspection requests would be very appreciated.

Thank you

Call that damage out but do not say it is WDI, would be one way, IMHO.


In Ohio most banks want to see the WDI inspection, I include these inspections with every home inspection.

In Ohio, and I imagine in California as well, as a home inspector it’s fine to call out damage, any damage, but if it’s damage from a WDI then one needs to be licensed to call it out as that, or mention the presence or absence of any WDI, the reasoning is because the state want us to be be trained in identifying and differentiating the different types of WDI and the damage they cause.


I think your right. If you saw obvious signs of termites would you put a note recommending a wdi inspector look at it?

When you include them in for home inspection do you mean you dont charge a add on rate?

Do you write up a seperate report for wdi or integrate it into your home inspection report?

In California, WDO is heavily regulated.

I don’t care if you see a termite holding a sign that says “I am a live termite” calling it a termite in your report could be considered practicing without a license and the state Pest Control board can and will fine you.

You can say “wood deterioration” or “evidence of possible insect activity”.

Saying “wood rot” could be considered a violation as it could be construed as attempting to identify WDO fungus. As Home Inspectors, we are not allowed to differentiate between termites, fungi, and other WDOs.

Inspectors in other states have completely different rules and regulations than we do in California. Here the home inspection and WDO inspection have to be separate inspections.


I include them at no extra cost with every home inspection I perform so my clients receive 2 reports, I am licensed in Ohio to perform both home and WDI inspections.

Ohio requires NPMA-33 form be filled out for all WDI inspections, not sure what CA requires.

Thank you for laying that out so clearly for me. Its good to know that california operates with its own higher licensed standard for WDO inspection. Thats probably why i have received so much conflicting information on the subject.

Do you sub out WDO inspections?
Refer them to a licensed company?
Or did you get licensed to perform your own?

I think the reason is that they want training to call out the LACK of WDI issues.

Anyone can identify damaged wood – see it say something – but you have to be certified to make a finding with specifics or that anyone might rely on for a real estate transaction.

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Yes, California is much different than many other states. I don’t know why people who don’t live in California are replying, because their answers have zero relevance to California laws.

Even if you get a license to be a WDO inspector, you still have to be under someone who has an operator license. So getting your own license doesn’t do you much good, as you’d still have to work under someone else for the pest side.

I used to refer to it out. I now sub it, but you still have to be careful. As HI, I can not collect any fees on their behalf. Any advertising I do in regard to termites has to have their name and license on it. Or else I face the wrath of the Pest Control board.

The best thing is to make friends with a few different termite companies, and have people you can refer to and rely on.

Actually it’s both, the lack of and the presence of, WDI. Ohio also requires the licensed WDI inspector to be trained to identify not only the type of WDI, and damage caused by WDI, but whether or not there’s an active infestation and what to recommend treatment for in needed.

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Thank you for the insight.

I will take your advice and opt for referral only. It seems like the safest and simplest way to handle it in california.

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People love to hear themselves talk, right or wrong.