The acronym WDO stands for Wood Destroying Organism, and is used to classify pests and fungus that actually digest wood, i.e. they use your home as a source of food. Because WDOs often present little evidence of activity, they can go unnoticed for years and can be difficult to detect. Organisms included in a WDO inspection report include the following:
WDO inspections are required for VA or FHA mortgages as well as other loans from many financial institutions — and for good reason. Common industry estimates pin termite damage alone at around $5 billion every year in the United States. The average cost for repair after a termite infestation is $3,000, but can be much higher depending on the extent of the damage and what part of the home they fed on.
A properly trained inspector is required because wood destroying organisms can be difficult to detect and identify. A WDO inspection is a visual inspection of the accessible components of the home including the crawlspace, attic, exterior, and so on. The inspection looks for evidence of active or past infestation such as wood damage, dead or living termites or beetles, mud tubes, etc. The inspection also looks for conditions that may lead to infestation such as soil contact with wood, windows, standing water, and more.