Buying a home? You need a Wood Destroying Insect (WDI) Report

June 23, 2022

A Wood Destroying Insect Report is a critical part of the home inspection for buyers to include in the home inspection and purchasing process.  In New York State, the WDI is performed by a certified inspector.  The WDI can also be required when you refinance your existing home.

What Are Wood Destroying Insects?

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Wood destroying insects is of critical importance because of the structural damage they can cause. Common wood-destroying insects include carpenter ants, carpenter bees, termites, and wood-boring beetles.

  • Carpenter ants. A home provides carpenter ants with a place to nest and a reliable food source. Carpenter ants build nests in the soft, damp, or dead wood. Their mandibles are super strong, and like carpenter bees, they do not eat the wood. They discard it as they work to create their nests.

Homeowners will notice piles of discarded wood shavings; some have heard the ants chewing the wood, evidence of a large colony. Carpenter ant swarmers are an accurate signal of carpenter ant infestation. These winged relatives of carpenter ants are more extensive and more mobile than the regular carpenter ant.

  • Carpenter bees. As a homeowner, you may have seen the telltale signs of carpenter bees and not realized what you were looking at. Carpenter bees create perfectly round holes in your deck, railing, or wooden furniture. These bees drill into the wood but do not produce the same damage that carpenter ants or termites present.

Carpenter bees weaken the wood via the tunnels created and the opportunity for water to enter and rot the wood, especially on the home’s siding. If there are visible holes, it may be a sign that there are more access points in places you cannot easily see, such as soffits and wood siding.

  • Termites have been chewing through wood and structures made from wood for literally millions of years. There is no telling the amount of property damage they have caused over the centuries. They are incredibly tenacious and can remain unseen, even after you think they are gone. Termites love the dark and feed below the foundation levels of structures. They look for opportunities where wood meets the ground and is often damp. They bore through these surfaces and other entry prospects via cracked foundations or brick or stone facing. 

Subterranean (underground) termites cause most termite damage. Subterranean termite nests usually contact the soil, thus the name subterranean. The most common structural pests among these ground-dwelling termites are the eastern, western, and Formosan subterranean termites. They will eat your framing starting at the bottom of the house and like softwoods. Drywood termites enter the roofline and damp wood termites like basements and bathrooms or where water leaks occur.

 Wood-boring beetles. Wood-boring beetles, such as powderpost beetles, common furniture beetles, or woodworms, can damage wood in and around your home. According to the University of Kentucky, discovering powderpost beetles can be very concerning to homeowners. It is essential to diagnose the problem correctly to avoid unnecessary effort and expense. Confirmation of the type of beetle and whether the infestation is active are crucial first steps. Other considerations include the location and extent of the infestation, and the type, age, moisture content, and condition/surface finish of the wood. Since powderpost beetles damage wood slowly, it takes time to consider the options available for remediation.

These beetles can enter your home on old furniture and reclaimed wood. These insects feed in the wood upon hatching and tunnel, creating an exit as adults. Be mindful of holes in furniture, especially furniture stored in a basement or dark, damp facility. And most importantly, never store firewood in your home, basement, or garage.

Wood-boring insects feed on, tunnel through, and nest inside of wood, potentially causing significant and expensive structural damage to a home or building.

What is a Wood Destroying Insect (WDI) Report?

A Wood Destroying Insect Inspection Report details findings from a thorough visual inspection of a home by a certified inspector or pest control company. It is important to note that it is a visual inspection meaning the inspector only views open areas.  They are not opening walls, floors, or ceilings.

How much does a Wood Destroying Insect inspection cost?

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When a new home buyer considers a property, we work with their realtors or renovation contractors before the sale is complete. Buyers can also contact us directly, as it is always best to speak with a professional pest control service before requesting a Wood Destroying Insect Report (WDI).  This ensures you fully understand what the WDI is and is not. A trained professional pest control service should perform this service.

Accurate Pest Control offers construction and repair services for damages caused by wood-destroying insects. The treatment is only a part of the process. Complete eradication requires experience in treatment, removal, sanitation, if necessary, and repair. Please speak with a member of our team to learn more about wood-destroying insect inspections and reports.

 About Accurate Pest Control

Established in 2004, Accurate Pest Control is a fully licensed and insured family-owned and operated business. Our New York State licenses include mold remediation, pest control, and nuisance wildlife services. Our team of service technicians and office staff are NYS certified. We know each other and trust each other and, in turn, trust our technicians with you, your home or business, family, and even pets. 

We service the capital district and surrounding areas but are not limited to:
Albany County, Columbia County, Fulton County, Green County, Montgomery County, Rensselaer County, Saratoga County, Schenectady County, Warren County, and Washington County.

Accurate Pest Control



Resources: University of Kentucky Entomology.

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