Mold can be a serious problem.
The Internet is full with information about how it can affect our health and what can be done to remove it.
Well, the question is – how can it affect a Real Estate transaction? It can be a deal breaker.
Mold is always the result of one or several problems. It can be a leak in the plumbing system, water infiltration from the exterior or something simple like sweating pipes or a fish tank.
Cracks or openings in the envelope of a building, this can be the walls or the roof, are always red flags, because rainwater enters the structure and this is perfect for mold growth.
Also, wet basements or crawlspaces are always the result of somebody cutting corners or that some materials failed. A big problem is always when vent ducts are ending in the attic or crawlspace.
This house has no mold problem! Are you absolutely sure? When was the last time you inspected all areas in the attic, the crawlspace and all the cabinets?
So – mold is no big deal and you just clean it up with some bleach – Right?
NO – if you don’t take care of the moisture problem, the mold will grow back immediately. You might be able to clean up hard surfaces like, glass, counter tops etc., but it’s almost impossible on porous surfaces, like drywall, furniture, rough cut wood – just to name a few.
If mold is detected, don’t panic, but action is highly recommended. A specialist, and I mean a good remediation company, can give the necessary advice, clean up the mold or remove the affected parts. But again – you have to take care of the moisture problem.
During a home inspection I discover sometimes areas with some stuff growing on them.
At this point the I don’t call it mold, it is an unidentified substance, or a mold like substance until identified by a laboratory.
So, should a client order a mold inspection when he orders a home inspection? Not necessarily.
A home inspector usually finds problems that are the source of the mold, and if this is the case, a mold inspection is justified.
If I do a home inspection and I face a situation like this, I automatically collect a sample and state this in my report. Now the client has the choice if a laboratory should do an identification, or if I should perform a very detailed mold inspection. Either way, it’s not a bad idea to consult a remediation company. Most times they can clean up the affected area really quick and inexpensive. Don’t forget, the source of the water infiltration needs to be corrected too.
This means there are no obstacles to proceed with the Real Estate transaction, and this makes everybody happy.
Is my service of taking the sample free? No – but it’s already included in my $299 inspection deal. An identification by the laboratory will cost $49 per sample
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Hi - this is Werner with Home Inspection Tennessee