Buying a home might be the biggest investment you will ever make in your life. As such, it is important to keep your home free from substances that can degrade or destroy it. Molds are a common home problem, especially in more humid and rainy locations, because moisture is one of the main causes of mold. A mold problem may or may not be serious depending on the severity, but if it is caught after spreading throughout a home, it can be a challenging issue to address.
Types of Mold
Depending on where they grow, mold can be divided into different types:
- Stachybotrys chartarum (Black mold)
This is the most commonly cited type due to its toxicity and the danger it poses to humans. It can grow on many common indoor building materials but requires a lot of moisture. The most common causes of black mold are leaks inside walls, above ceilings, or under floors that have not been addressed for a long time.
- Cladosporium is the type of mold that is found on wood and carpets.
- Alternaria is also a common type of mold—the one found in poorly ventilated bathrooms near showers and sinks. It requires very little moisture to grow.
Among the types already mentioned, this is the least common. It is the mold found in rotting material such as carpets and other fabrics.
Mold and Real Estate
Aside from the obvious health concerns, mold is also one of the major culprits in the structural damage of a home. Mold gradually eats away at the material your home is made of, ruining it for you and for its future occupants.
If you’re planning to put your home on the market, mold jeopardizes the chances of it being sold in the shortest possible time. In fact, it might not sell at all since most home buyers know the role that mold plays in causing structural damage. This is where mold inspection and remediation come in.
Why Hire an Expert?
When trying to detect mold, it is possible to do it yourself using a home inspection kit, but this leaves the possibility that some sources of mold can be left undetected. A professional mold inspector will use state-of-the-art tools such as a fiber optic camera and thermal moisture measuring devices to thoroughly verify the presence—or absence—of mold. Below are three of the top reasons why you should hire a mold inspection expert when buying or selling a home.
- Real estate agents will not touch a moldy home.
Real estate agents are aware that the presence of mold can abruptly end a real estate transaction. If a seller does not reveal that the home is infested with mold, the buyer may never know a problem even exists—until it is too late. If the seller is aware of a mold problem, this seller is also aware that it might hinder the sale of their property and, hence, may try to hide mold issues.
- Mold remediation will cost you.
Completely removing mold from the home, or mold remediation, is expensive because all materials contaminated with mold must be removed. The cost of remediation will depend on how large the affected area is and the kind of materials it is made of. Furthermore, mold remediation specialists receive special training and follow specific procedures to prevent mold from spreading. Mold removal is not their only goal; it is also their goal to contain it.
- Home inspectors are not experts in the detection and elimination of the mold.
Home inspectors can only detect obvious problems in a home. The problem is that mold is often hidden beneath the carpet, inside the walls, or under a new paint job. They may help you detect warning signs of the existence of mold, but they will not be able to verify whether molds exist or not.
Considering the major headaches that can be caused by mold if not addressed immediately, the cost of mold inspection seems insignificant. Mold may not seem like a serious problem at the onset, but waiting for it to spread makes it a tough, unwelcome tenant to evict from your home. When it comes to mold inspection, leave it to the experts to make your home a healthy home.
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