Home Improvement

The Problem with Mold when Renovating and Selling a Home

According to a recent article in USA Today, “… home flippers are making a killing in real estate, bringing back memories of the housing bubble.” A home flipper is one who purchases a property with the intent to do small or large scale renovations in order to sell the home for a profit. While the inventory of low cost housing has been shrinking, home flippers are back to making serious bank on the homes they renovate and sell.

Given the decline of available inventory in the marketplace, realtors are hungry for properties to list and sell. Homeowners contemplating a move are in good position to do so as the number of buyers looking for a new home steadily increases. In order to get the most money for one’s home, sometimes a realtor will recommend making some renovations to improve a home’s appeal to prospective buyers.

When purchasing a home to flip, or attempting do-it-yourself renovations to improve your home before putting it on the market, one issue to look for is mold and mildew. After renovation is under way, mold or mildew problems that weren’t obvious upon first look sometimes appear. Mold can exist and thrive behind walls, beneath basement carpeting, in crawl spaces, and in areas often subjected to warm, moist air such as bathrooms. Once uncovered, any type of mold should be professionally inspected and remediated. Mold can be highly toxic. An immediate assessment is needed to protect the health of those working in the area and anyone who will be near it or living in the structure.

Investing in a mold inspection may be a worthwhile step in the offer and negotiation process when purchasing a house. After all, in many states, both the seller and realtor are held accountable for disclosing mold issues. Sellers should be more than agreeable to the idea of covering the expense of mold cleanup. If selling your current home, having a mold inspection done prior to putting the home on the market may alleviate future worry over legal fees. It’s also nice to be able to show potential buyers that the inspection has been done and that care has been invested by the homeowner into the home and into the future owners of it. It’s akin to having the vehicle maintenance records available on a car one is selling.

There are common places homeowners and potential home buyers can look for potential mold problems and prevent potential mold development:

– Check around windows to see if any spores have started where rainwater has made its way in. To prevent the issue, make sure windows are well sealed.

– Check roofs, attics, bathrooms, laundry rooms, and basements. These are common places for moisture to become trapped and provides the optimum environment for mold to grow and thrive.

– Look around pipes. One may be leaking. Anywhere water and moisture collects is a potential breeding ground for mold.

Ridding a home environment of mold is far more extensive than just wiping it up or tearing out mold infested materials. It sounds like a simple task, but quite often folks make a problem far larger by accidentally spreading mold spores into the atmosphere. These spores will linger and circulate until they land and possibly find new areas to infest. The longer they circulate, the greater the chances of those dwelling in the structure to develop a mold-induced illness or respiratory complication.

Hiring a professional, experienced, and trusted company with the training and certification to inspect, identify, and remediate a mold problem can actually save you money down the road. It will make your home a better, safer living environment, not only for future owners, but you as well as you continue to live in the structure until it sells. This microscopic nuisance can become a mammoth problem if left untreated or is not treated correctly and safely. Hiring a trained, certified mold remediation professional will not only protect you but your investment as well.