The primary purpose of Mold Evaluations is very similar to Home Inspections in that it is the search for the sources of water penetration in the home.
Should I Order a Mold Evaluation?
Whether or not you should order a Mold Evaluation depends on the circumstances and whether or not your are buying, selling, renting or maintaining the property.
When Buying A Home or Commercial Property
If you are buying a property and are concerned about mold or have mold sensitivities it is recommended to hire an inspection company that specializes in mold testing and mold evaluations. It is recommended to start with a basic Home Inspection or a basic Commercial Inspection– after the basic Property Inspection the inspector can make additional recommendations for Mold Testing or Mold Evaluation if needed.
After we perform a basic Property Inspection it is usually not necessary to perform an additional Mold Evaluation because typically we can answer the questions about where the sources of water penetration are coming from. There are some rare cases when further evaluation is needed and in those cases we can provide additional references and direction.
When Selling A Home or Commercial Property
If you are selling a home or commercial property and are concerned about possible air quality issues it is recommended to hire an inspection company that specializes in mold evaluations and mold testing. It is recommended to start with a basic Pre-Listing Inspection (that helps prepare sellers for a real estate sale). After the basic Pre-Listing Inspection the Inspector can give guidance about the causes of water penetration and possible repairs to improve air quality.
When Maintaining A Home or Commercial Property
If you own the property in question and are concerned about potential air quality issues it is recommended to hire an inspection company that specializes in Mold Evaluations and Mold Testing. It is generally recommended to start with a basic Annual Maintenance Inspection (this yearly service is designed to help property owners maintain their property and to prevent dangerous and expensive issues). After the basic Annual Maintenance Inspection the Inspector can give guidance about the causes of water penetration and possible repairs to improve air quality.
When Renting A Home or Commercial Property
Unfortunately options for renters that are concerned about the air quality in their leased property is very limited in the state of North Carolina. Our state does not require property owners to disclose air quality issues or to mitigate them. Typically renters are not incentivized to pay for expensive repairs or testing out of their own pocket. Renters should discuss options with the property owner. If discussions with the property owner are not helpful the renter may consider relocating or taking on some repairs at their own expense. In some cases affordable improvements can be made by the renter (for example: minor gutter/downspout/roof/grading repairs and maintenance). A well-placed dehumidifier or two can sometimes improve the air quality significantly- this is an investment that a renter can take with them when they move.
When you need more information about the Air Quality of a Property
We recommend that if you have any questions about the air quality of a building you should consult an independent professional that does not sell or perform mold remediation services because their opinions and recommendations for repair will be un-biased. If the property is located in Western North Carolina please give us a call at 828 484 6494.
Additional Mold Testing and Mold Evaluations
In some cases we may perform additional Mold Testing to confirm our findings. More information can be found on these pages about Whether to Order a Mold Test and Interpreting Mold Test Results and other Mold Pricing and Service information.
In this Video: Reviewing a Mold Evaluation Report
In this video: Home Inspector Jason Bellamy reviews a mold evaluation report of a homeowner that was concerned about a persistent smell at the rear addition.
What does A Mold Evaluation Include?
During our mold evaluations we inspect all the same categories of the home that we would in a Home Inspection except for the Electrical System. What did Jason inspect and what did he find? The systems evaluated in this report and the findings:
- We inspected the grading, downspouts, siding, flashing, trees and more
- Findings: Grading issues, Gutter issues, Mature trees located near the roof and foundation area
- We inspected the roof coverings, flashing, gutters and downspouts Findings: Inadequate flashing, history of a roof leak
- Structural Components
- We inspected the attic, crawl space, framing, deck/patio connections to the house and more
- Findings: Water penetration at rear deck and possible decay of the floor framing.
- We inspected the tub/showers, sinks, toilets, vents at the roof, attic, inside the house and under the house for evidence of leaks
- Insulation and Ventilation
- We inspected the insulation and ventilation of the roof, walls, and floors
- Findings: Inadequate ventilation in crawl space
- Heating and Cooling
- We inspected the heating and cooling equipment and especially the ductwork and its connections and exits
- Findings: Un-insulated round type duct work and blocked vents that could cause ventilation
- We inspected the interiors for evidence of mold, mildew, moisture damage, roof leaks, etc…
- Findings: History of a leak at the ceiling
- Built-In Appliances
- We inspect for leaks or a history of leaks at the dishwasher, refrigerator and any other appliances that dispense water or produce condensate
- Pests, Insects, and Fungus
- We inspect for evidence of fungus, wood destroying fungus, wood destroying insects, and other pests or mildew that could contribute to air quality issues
99% of the time air quality issues are caused by poor crawl space or basement environments and water penetration from the exterior. The humidity and mold seeps into the finished areas from the ground and cause musty smells, water damage, and health concerns.
During this evaluation the Inspector found a number of items that could have effected the air quality in this home (13 actually) but the crawl space was dry. In this case improvements to the roof flashing, gutters, grading and deck flashing were recommended as these were areas where water penetration was found.
Whether you are buying, selling or maintaining a house, if you have concerns about the air quality of a home and want an un-biased, independent and professional opinion please call us and we will determine which service is best for you.
Western North Carolina Mold Inspectors
Builder Buddy is your resource for Mold Inspections, Mold Evaluations, and Mold Testing in the Western North Carolina area. We also provide Home Inspections, Maintenance Inspections, Commercial Inspections, Water testing, Well Inspections, Septic Inspections and more. Schedule online or call with questions.