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The 5 Most Important Reasons for Mold Inspection Before Buying a Home

The home is a beautiful thing, whether you’re moving from one to another, having one built, or moving out of your parent’s place. They’re the start of a new life and you will have some of the best and worst times there.

If you have a family or live alone, it will be where you spend most of your time and belongings.

If you’re looking for less expensive houses on the market, then you may be considering an older home that has been through a lot. Even if it’s not old, your house will be subject to all of the world's natural forces.

Your house may get flooded, termites, or even mold. Older homes are especially susceptible to mold infestation, considering they were built to be airtight. This is a perfect environment for the mold to grow.

People have gotten deathly ill from mold. Since mold spreads through spores, they have even lost most of their belongings to rid themselves of mold. It can be toxic to humans. The thing is, it can all be preventable with mold inspections!

All Homes Are Susceptible

As said above, many older homes have problems with airflow, leaving air-tight spaces for mold to grow.  Even a leaking roof, leaking plumbing pipe in a wall, or an AC drip pan or line clogs up and slowly drips moisture where it would likely never have been seen by the untrained eye.

Water damage from a lack of proper home care is another little-known but huge player in mold infestations in the home.

However, even if your home is being built, it can still get moldy! Home builders have begun returning to that 1970s method of keeping homes energy efficient when it comes to heating and cooling. This does save on utilities, which saves you money in the long run, but it also opens your house to possible mold infestation.

Human error is often another reason that new houses get mold. A slight mistake in a vapor barrier will lead to mold growth. If the foundation were not allowed to dry completely before installing the insulation, mold would grow.

Cutting corners always leads to a problematic result.

Anything that can be used to cut corners and costs can lead to mold problems. Plywood and timber aren’t being used as much anymore because of their cost; instead, Orient Strand Board is being used. These boards have pores and are made of wood and glue, making them an easier target for mold since it's all organic matter, which mold feeds on.



The 5 Best Reasons to have Mold Inspections

Professionals do mold inspections. Regardless of what else you do when you’re looking for a new home, professionals do what they’re paid to do.

Mold experts know what they’re looking for. Other benefits are your homeowner insurance will likely cover the tab if it was caused by faulty plumbing and a legitimate contractor completes the work. They even work with your insurance companies to rectify the issues as quickly as possible. Your insurance company understands this and has provisions in your policy to prevent further damage from the infestation. It's cheaper for them to fix it as quickly as possible.

Here are the reasons:

  • Getting rid of it can be expensive.
  • Mold tests can be inconclusive and expensive.
  • Most home inspectors do not look for mold.
  • Real estate agents aren’t looking for mold.
  • You could lose everything you own.

Mold Test Kit                  

Removal Can Be Expensive

A few things can determine the cost of removing mold from your home. It depends entirely on how much has been infected, what materials are infected, and ease of access to the mold. Depending on these, average mold removal will cost from $3,000 all the way up to $50,000! There are even horror stories where homes had to be demolished because it was irreparable.

Before you even purchase the home, it is extremely cost-effective to have someone trained in mold inspections to help you decide. They will let you know quickly and efficiently whether the house has mold. This gives you the best situation as well. If there’s no mold, then you’re fine. If there is mold, you can decide against it or negotiate a price drop for the home!

Tests Can Be Inconclusive

The thing about do-it-yourself mold tests is that there are many different ones out there. It’s entirely possible for them to say different things as well due to differing criteria. These tests cost hundreds of dollars to do, and the directions should be followed carefully to attain accurate results. Mold can grow quickly in places you can't see, but mold testing can signal that you have hidden mold in the house.

Since these mold tests are expensive and inconclusive due to user error, it’s better to skip them and go to the mold experts anyway. The professionals have better equipment and knowledge to handle testing for mold infection, whether it’s there or not.

Home Inspectors May Miss Hidden Mold

There are certain things that a home inspector does: look at the roof, the plumbing, the wiring, and the overall structural integrity of the home. The previous homeowners may not even know they have mold because most people have not experienced major health concerns when it comes to it. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t grow and become more harmful.

Home inspectors will let you know about potential problems, but they won’t necessarily be knowledgeable about mold growth. They get a commission based on the price of the house.

While they may not know about the mold or haven’t been told about it in the first place, there have been real estate agents that have also masked the truth about it. That is not to say you should be distrustful, only that you should exercise caution and commit to your due diligence.

When purchasing a home, you must look at the property disclosure carefully. You can do plenty of things to see if mold growth is a possibility, like asking about flooding, rot damage, basement dampness issues, or other things that might create conditions for mold. There is no reason not to ask these questions; if you do, make sure you bring in a mold expert before purchasing.

You Could Lose Everything

After a while, mold can become a truly destructive force. People with respiratory or autoimmune problems will have the worst times, but being in currently good health doesn’t mean you are safe. There have been deaths from mold infestation. Since it spreads easily, it can infect your clothes, bed, belongings… anything that could be a source of nutrients is susceptible to mold.

There have been many people that have been displaced from their home because of mold. This is because mold can turn what was once a happy home into an inhabitable zone. It’s always better to nip mold growth in the bud before it starts.

A mold inspection will be all you need to determine if you will live comfortably from the start, or if the mold remediation process will be necessary.

Mold Inspections Mean Comfort

“Better safe than sorry” has never been more relevant. Mold is a serious issue and can cause serious health problems. You could lose your possessions if it gets out of control. Mold spreads unlike any other fungus in the home and thrives in tight, moist places. It can grow behind the walls, in the pipes, basement, and attic.

Mold will destroy your home bit by bit, and the longer you ignore it, the more damage it will do. It will ruin your property value if you ever want to sell it in the future. It can damage the structure of your home and cause dangerous problems to the point of roof collapses or holes in the wall.

While you may want to get your new dream home in line as quickly as possible, you’ll want to take your time and consider all the options in front of you. A great home inspector is one thing, but a mold inspector is another that you should consider. Mold inspections will give you peace of mind. If you choose to ignore potential issues, you could end up looking for a professional remediation contractor.

The entirety of hiring a mold expert is it's vastly cheaper than the problems that could follow you through the purchase of your home. It may not be apparent now, but it could become a bigger problem in the future. Don’t pass up the opportunity to stop a problem before it happens!

  • Tiffany Ellis

    Tiffany Ellis is a writer for Damage Control 911 and has been in the water damage and mold remediation industry since 2007.

  • Jim Corkern

    Jim is a water damage and structural drying technician. He's been in the water damage restoration industry for 15 years.

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