Searching for a new home is quite a process. It can be extremely difficult to find one in the right area with a design you like – and, of course, one that fits into your budget. But what should you do if the perfect house you find has mold in it? Is buying a house with mold a deal-breaker?
Mold is quite common in homes across the United States. A study published by Harvard University estimates that 70% of all homes have traces of mold inside!
Mold growth is typically a sign of water damage in the building. This could result from a flood, broken pipe, or simply a build-up of moisture in the air. Unfortunately, mold can start to form within just a day or two in the right environment. So, unless a mess such as a busted pipe or an overflowed tub is cleaned immediately, mold will likely start to form.
This is why it is always recommended that you request a mold inspection of a property before you buy it. Professional technicians will check out spots where mold tends to grow and collect samples for testing. This will let you know if any mold is present and the type and where it is collecting.
Large amounts of mold are quite unsightly and can create an unpleasant musty smell. But hidden mold that is concealed in spaces like between the drywall or under the carpet may not seem like a deal-breaker when it comes to buying the house of your dreams.
However, there are some things to consider before buying a house with mold. Here’s what you need to know.
Mold Growth Jeopardizes Family Member’s Health
Mold is a type of fungi, meaning that it is a living, growing organism. Mold spores can be released into the air or onto the skin, which can trigger allergic reactions. A recent medical report concluded that around 30% of people have a mold allergy. Additionally, this study found that people living in a house with mold were 50% more likely to develop asthma.
Prolonged mold exposure can cause a range of health issues, ranging from mild symptoms to serious illnesses. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services link mold growth with poor indoor air quality and several health issues, including:
- Runny nose
- Eye irritation
- Nose irritation
- Throat irritation
- Skin irritation
- Upper respiratory irritation
- Serious lung infections
- Strong symptoms of asthma
Mold exposure can also develop into more severe health problems, especially for people with weakened immune systems. It can lead to respiratory infections, pneumonia, bronchitis, auto-immune disease, and in extreme cases, death.
If you are considering buying a home with mold, it is extremely important to test the type of mold that is present. Some species are more toxic than others. The most toxic mold is Stachybotrys, more popular by its other name, Black Mold. This mold is extremely toxic and must be treated and removed by professionals before a home can be inhabitable.
Mold Infestation Reduces a Property’s Value
Most people do not want to go anywhere near a home that already has mold in it. Even small amounts of mold can reduce a property’s value by 17 to 23% on average.
Now, this can be great news if you are in the market. Buying a home with mold can give you a discount upfront – and it gives you leverage to talk down the selling price. You may be able to negotiate down several thousand dollars if you can prove that the house has a significant mold problem that will need remediation.
However, there are some additional costs to consider here. Not many people are aware of the property disclosure requirements in the United States that will hit you years from now when you are trying to sell your property. You must be able to prove that the mold issue was completely resolved – otherwise, you could lose out on your investment.
As part of any property transaction, the completion of a seller’s disclosure document is mandatory. Therefore, failing to disclose mold issues is bound to cause an issue with any property transaction.
So, you will need to hire a trusted mold removal and remediation service to take care of the issue right away. At GreenWorks, we have helped thousands of homeowners address their mold issues. In addition, we always provide clearance documents to ensure that all mold has been removed from the property. This is extremely useful to use when and if you intend to sell your home in the future.
What to do When Buying a House with Mold
If you decide to go ahead and purchase a property with mold, your first move should be to call a mold inspection and removal service. The sooner you take care of any mold issue, the better. Plus, there is no need to risk moving into a property that could potentially cause harm to you or your family.
In addition to testing and removing the present mold, you should also look into long-term solutions to prevent new mold growth. This includes sealing up pipes, HVAC systems, as well as spaces around windows and doors.
If mold has grown on the walls, it is best to use mildew-resistant anti-mold paint. This will help to kill any mold, mildew, or bacteria that begins to form. You can also use dehumidifiers or even fans to dry out the air in rooms with poor ventilation.
You should schedule regular mold inspections to ensure that the problem does not grow back. Some homes are more susceptible to mold growth due to climate or structural design. For instance, the New Jersey area has high humidity, particularly in the summer. This creates the perfect environment for mold to form, especially in areas like basements or bathrooms.
Finally, take action quickly if your home experiences any water damage. A burst pipe, major spill, or any flooding can quickly turn into a huge mold issue if it is not taken care of right away. You need a trusted mold remediation service on hand to step in and help if you run into any of these circumstances.
Over to You
Buying a house with mold can be a risky move. Mold can significantly reduce your property’s value and fill your home’s indoor air with health-devastating mold spores. This can lead to serious health problems if left untreated.
To safeguard your property’s value and health, it is crucial to kill mold as quickly as possible. First, be sure to have any property thoroughly inspected and tested to know what type of mold is present. Then, hire a trustworthy mold removal service to take care of the problem once and for all.
GreenWorks has been protecting New Jersey properties from mold for over 20 years. We use the latest technology to inspect and test homes to find mold, mildew and determine the air quality. Our highly-trained technicians can also safely remove any mold from your home, so it is safe for your entire family to live in.
Contact us today to schedule a home inspection and learn more about our mold removal services.