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Buying a House? Don’t Forget to Check for Mold Growth!

Posted in Mold, on May 24, 2016

The spring real estate market in the city of Toronto and the GTA is hotter than ever this year. Sales and prices have never been higher. Unfortunately, there is another price to pay aside from the listing price. The price for removing hidden mold growth. Many purchasers are forgoing a typical home inspection and even more importantly they may be ignoring potential hidden mold and moisture issues. This does not have to be the case. Anyone buying a resale home in Toronto or the GTA should be using a qualified mold inspector to perform a mold inspection. There does not need to be any visible signs of mold growth or a musty odour for there to be a significant mold growth issue. In our experience, many of our mold assessment do not show any obvious mold growth or obvious moisture issue. Unfortunately though, there can be significant mold damage that is hidden.

Here are a few things to look for:

  1. Do a walk around outside. Are the downspouts connected to the weeping tiles or do they extend into the ground. This could be an indicator or potential moisture issues.
  2. Does the slope of the land slope towards the home or foundation. This could lead to basement leaks in heavy rain.
  3. Is it a block foundation. The concrete blocks are hollow and can hold excessive moisture.
  4. Is there efflorescence of the foundation? This can indicate a moisture issue.
  5. Is there any swelling on door jams or baseboards in the basement?
  6. Is there an odour?
  7. Are there bugs like pill bugs or centipedes?
  8. Are any of the sill plates or framing that is visible painted white? This could indicate a past mold remediation.
  9. What does the attic look like? Is there mold or water staining under the roof sheathing or insulation.
  10. Are there any stains on ceiling or walls?
  11. Are there any stairs near or under windows?
  12. Are there any water stains under the kitchen or bathroom sinks?
  13. Are the faucets in the kitchen properly caulked?
  14. Are the faucets in the bathrooms properly sealed and caulked as well?

Any of the above issues could lead to water damage and mold growth. Depending on the duration of the water damage, serious mold growth issues could exist. Typically mold remediation can be fairly expensive. In many cases, cleaning up a mold growth issue properly can range between $5,000 and $10,000. In some cases, mold remediation can cost beyond $50,000. Mold growth can also lead to airborne mold spores which can have a serious effect on allergies and your health. So what should you do? Have a qualified mold assessment by a certified mold inspection company that does not also do mold remediation. This is an obvious conflict of interest.

A proper mold assessment consists of the following:

  1. A proper visual inspection
  2. Moisture meter assessment of all walls, floors and ceilings
  3. Thermal imaging of all surfaces for hidden moisture
  4. Airborne mold spore sampling throughout the home
  5. Optional mold dog assessment to locate hidden mold growth.
  6. Comprehensive report outlining the location and severity of the issues and what mold remediation steps are required to fix the problem.

Call us for a complete and easy to understand mold assessment of the home you are considering to purchase. All of our mold assessments are non-destructive and provide a clear picture of what potential issues your new home may have. Don’t let mold growth ruin your next dream home experience. We are a professional mold inspection company that does not also provide clean up or remediation so there is no conflict of interest. If your home has a mold growth issue or does not…we will tell you honestly.

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