04 Mar Hidden Mold Problems A Standard Home Inspection May Not Find
A good Home Inspector is honest and detailed, but, there are six hiddenproblems that even the most detailed Home Inspector may not find.
By: ABM Environmental Inc., Vancouver, BC
1. Former Marijuana Grow Operations
The vast majority of former marijuana grow operations have never been found or known by police. Many people are living in former grow ops without even knowing it. The former growers often cover the mold up but do not re-mediate it properly. The problem is almost impossible to detect by the home inspector. The only sure way to know if there are elevated levels of mold that may pose a health risk is to test the air for mold. The tests ensure the home does not contain toxic black mold common in former grow operations.
2.Leaks And Flooded Areas That Were Not Restored Properly
Whether it is a flooded basement, a burst pipe, or an overflowed bath tub, floods do happen often. These floods if not dried properly will leave behind hidden mold. It’s important to ensure the home does not contain toxic levels of hidden mold from past floods by simple testing.
3. Former Leaky Condos With Elevated Levels Of Mold Still In The Building
Often after leaky condo restoration work is complete, mold testing is not done to verify if mold spores are at a safe level. Mold can contaminate the interior living areas of the building during the remediation process. Unsafe levels of mold may remain within the building long after leaky condo repairs are completed. Elevated levels of mold pose a health risk.
4.Inadequate Attic Ventilation Causing High Humidity And Allowing Mold To Form
Attics are designed to allow air to flow through the soffit vents and exhaust through roof top vents to reduce the humidity. Often this ventilation system does not function properly due to plugged vents or an inadequate balance between soffit and roof top vents. Condensation will form on the attic sheathing and allow mold to grow. This is not always detected by home inspectors.
5. Damp Basements That Were Finished Without First Resolving Moisture Problems
Damp basements that are finished without resolving moisture problems result in mold forming behind walls or beneath the flooring if proper vapour barriers are not installed or if there was pre-existing moisture problems. It’s important to detect moisture problems below the surfaces and test for mold levels in the air to determine if there are any hidden problems behind the walls or below the flooring.
6.Wet Crawl Spaces During The Winter Months Which Dry Out During The Spring And Summer
If a crawl space has moisture problems mold will likely contaminate the interior of the house over time. Since the moisture in the crawl space is not easily detected during dryer summer months, often the problem is completely missed by home inspectors. In the winter, the crawl spaces will become damp and musty. Testing can determine if there is a mold problem in the crawl space and if it is affecting the air quality inside the house.
We have been in the real estate industry for over 18 years helping hundreds of clients solve these types of problems. We purchase houses, townhomes, condos, development projects and multi-family projects that are in need of minor or extensive repair in the Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley, North Shore and Squamish.