If you are ready to buy a new house or condo, take a moment to congratulate yourself on this exciting time. Scheduling a home inspection is strongly recommended on any home you are interested in, since inspectors look for what’s “under the surface.” Mold is among these things. While requesting a separate mold inspection for a prospective Orange County residence is a good idea, you can look for signs yourself as well. Below are indications telling you to call for a comprehensive mold inspection.
That earthy, musty odor is among the first signs of a mold issue. You might notice this odor in one area, such as the basement or attic, or throughout the home, depending on the extent of the mold infestation. Musty odors are sometimes noticeable in conjunction with visible mold, such as mold on wet attic insulation. Let the realtor know you smell mold and inquire when the home was tested for the detrimental fungi last. Any information you can procure about the home’s mold history is essential, since it helps you negotiate with the buyer and make an informed real estate decision.
“Hidden” Water Damage
Not all water damage comes in the form of obvious leaks. Some signs of damage fall into the “hidden” category, such as brownish stains on the walls and ceilings. These stains are the result of rainwater evaporation, which leaves dirt and other particles behind. If you notice these stains anywhere in a prospective home, learn how long they have been there. It takes most mold strains about 48 hours to reproduce and flourish, so if you see brownish stains, fungal growth has probably formed or is currently “in development.”
Checking under all sinks is a good idea when looking at a house, as there might be leaking pipes. Any exposed piping in a potential home should be examined for damage, such as corrosion and dents, and leaks. If you are certain the house in question is for you and there are leaking pipes present, you have the power to negotiate. Ask the seller to lower the price or schedule the repairs. Should the seller refuse to do either, you can walk away from the sale and look elsewhere.