The last thing that anyone wants to find while they’re engrossed in a home inspection, whether they’re an amateur or a professional, is mold or any of the telltale signs that mold might be a potential problem.
But even if they do, it isn’t the end of the world, and it doesn’t mean that any potential real estate deal has to fall through or be scuppered by the presence of mold.
If an inspection does uncover the presence of mold in a home, the inspector will inform the realtor who will then pass on the information to their client and recommend that they have the mold treated before proceeding with the sale.
This ensures that the property in question is then certified to be mold-free, and the sale can continue. If questioned by the prospective buyer, the realtor also has to inform the potential buyer that mold was present, but has been treated and that the house is safe.
If you’re doing the inspection yourself and you find evidence of mold, you should always inform the realtor.
As well as making sure that the owner treats the mold, it presents a perfect opportunity for you to make any additional suggestions to the realtor that you think the owner should take into consideration or be made aware of.
Will Mold Fail A Home Inspection?
Providing that either the seller or the realtor addresses the issue and treats any mold that might be discovered during a home inspection, has the certification to prove that the mold has been successfully treated and presents that certification to the inspector, it shouldn’t have any bearing on whether or not the home in question might, or might not fail its inspection.
Having said that, different states have different laws regarding home inspection, and what might be legal in one state won’t necessarily be legal, or legally binding in another. Whatever state law requires of an inspection, if mold is discovered, it’s almost always the responsibility of the vendor to have the mold problem treated before any sale can continue.
If you are concerned that mold might have been a problem, you can always speak to the realtor about it and have a possible clause included in the contract to cover any additional costs that its discovery might, or might not incur during any further potential inspections and the eventual purchase of the property in question.
Can Home Inspectors Detect Mold?
Mold can be pernicious and tenacious, and can and often does manage to hide from even the most dedicated and observant home inspectors.
One of the main problems with mold is that before it starts to appear on the interior and exterior walls of a house, it can, and almost always does, run rampant in the gaps between them.
The only way to know for sure whether or not a home has mold is by ripping a hole in the drywall and taking a look inside it to see if there is any mold present.
Sometimes, it isn’t difficult for a home inspector to find signs of mold, as it can appear on the walls of a home, and they’ll also usually look in cupboards and underneath sinks in the kitchen and in any bathrooms for any obvious signs of mold.
Home inspectors are also trained to look for any signs of water damage and potential leaks in the houses that they inspect and if they do find them, either can be a sign that there may be a potential mold problem in the house.
However, some inspectors are reluctant to sign any paperwork that could indicate that there might be mold problems, as it can, and has led to them being legally liable, and held to account by realtors and vendors if it is later discovered that there are no mold problems.
Do Home Inspectors Check For Mold?
Most home inspectors won’t specifically check any property that they’re inspecting for mold, and will only be able to tell if mold is present if the problem is immediately apparent.
Inspectors will however check for any potential water damage or leaks that could if they’re discovered, indicate that the property in question might have mold.
While an inspector will check a property for these problems, they’re usually incredibly reluctant to categorically state whether or not any leaks or water damage means that there’s almost certainly a mold problem, as saying as much can leave them open to the very real possibility of potential legal action.
If you commission an intensive home inspection or ask the vendor and realtor to commission one, it is possible to ask the inspector doing the inspection to search for any signs of mold, in which case they will add their findings to any report that they submit.
But, generally speaking, most home inspectors won’t check any property that they’re observing and investigating for mold unless they’re specifically asked to do so by the client who has hired them.