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Termite and WDI inspections in Chicagoland and the Chicago Suburbs

Why get a termite inspection?

Termites are a very serious structural pest that cause approximately 5 billion ​dollars in damage every year. Termite damage is no joke, with treatments often costing thousands of dollars, and structural damage that can amount to much more than that to repair. It is critical to stop them as soon as they are discovered as the infestation can spread very quickly. A termite inspection is the best way to ensure that the new home you are purchasing is not a ticking time-bomb, and to check if an existing situation is in fact termites. 

What is the difference between termites and WDI's? What does WDI entail?

WDI is short for Wood-Destroying insects, and in addition to termites the term covers many common pests such as carpenter ants, old wood-boring beetles, carpenter bees, and more. Below is a brief description of the common wood-destroying insect types. 


Termites are winged insects that live on the cellulose in wood, and they create a series of tunnels in the wood as they chew through and eat it. The damage is usually hidden, with the wood looking fine until it is prodded with a screwdriver, in which case it crumbles and is found to be hollow. Subterranean and Drywood termites are two of the most common types. Subterranean termites build a nest underground and need moisture to survive. They infest the wood closest to the soil, often in damp basements, and are frequently found in foundation joists and structural lumber. Drywood termites typically enter above ground and do damage to your home without the need to bring mud and soil with them. 

Carpenter Ants

Carpenter ants don’t eat wood, but they burrow into it in order to build nests. These large ants come in a variety of colors depending on species, including red, black, yellow and brown. Some carpenter ants have wings, just like termites. While termites have wings of equal length, the carpenter ant’s front wings are longer than the back wings. Rotting wood gives carpenter ants the perfect entry point into your home. Carpenter ants come out en-masse after a period of heavy rain or flooding. You’ll often find them in basements or around rotting wood near window sills or leaky pipes. As they do not actually eat the wood, piles of wood shavings resulting from their activities are a good sign of their presence. 

Powderpost Beetles

Powderpost beetles are small brown beetles with elongated bodies and small heads. They range in size from 1/8 to 3/4 inches in length, depending on the species. Powderpost beetles lay their eggs on top of wood or just below its surface. When the eggs hatch, the larvae feed on the wood, chewing a tunnel to the surface over the course of one to five years. These beetles most often damage exposed wood such as floors, fences, decks, and joists in attics.

Wood Borers

Wood borers are a group of insects that eat trees, acorns and nuts. These insects create holes in wood when they exit as larvae, but don’t structurally damage the wood. Common types of wood boring insects include metallic wood borers, wood wasps, bark beetles and long-horned beetles. Appearance varies depending on the species. Some, like the 1/8-inch-long bark beetle, are tiny, while others, like the 2-inch-long long-horned beetle, are quite large. Wood borers are often found in firewood, log homes or structural wood. 

Why do banks require WDI inspections?

Due to the fact that termites cause a significant amount of damage, many banks require a termite and WDI inspection before they approve a loan. This helps them mitigate the risk of a costly foreclosure if the home ends up being condemned due to WDI damage and the owner cannot continue to pay. 

VA loan termite inspection and form NPMA-33 

The most common WDI form required by banks, including the VA, is form NPMA-33. In fact, a home purchase or sale cannot be completed until this form is complete. At Pest Arrest we understand that time is often of the essence, and are usually able to perform the inspection and email a completed form the same day it is requested. The same day VA loan form is available in the west Chicago suburbs, including towns such as Park Ridge, Glen Ellyn, Wheaton, Naperville, Joliet, Schaumburg, Sugar Grove, Geneva, Hinsdale, and everything in between. 

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