Mold is prevalent throughout Southwest Florida. Mold can be found in bathrooms, kitchens, garages, the underside of carpets and pads, front and back side of drywall, wallpaper, inside and outside of the AC system and duct work, attics, and virtually everywhere in nature in Southwest Florida. There are four essentials for mold growth-warmth, food, moisture, and mold spores. These conditions are very common in this area. Mold typically smells foul, and it most often smells like damp woods. We do not recommend specifically smelling suspected mold areas.
Florida Dept Of Health For Mold & Radon
EPA Website For Mold
Indoor Air Quality and Mold
Indoor air pollution can be a much greater risk than outdoor pollution. This is because Americans typically spend the majority of their time indoors. The air inside the house is obviously not as diluted as the outside. Think about thisâ€¦. You probably spend the majority of your life in the presence of unnecessarily concentrated chemical and biological pollutants!
Mold is a microorganism that has tiny seeds, or spores, that are spread on the air, land, and feed on organic matter. It has been in existence throughout human history, and actually contributes to the life process. It takes many different forms, many of them benign, like mildew. Some characterized as allergens are relatively benign but can provoke allergic reactions among sensitive people, and others characterized as pathogens can have adverse health effects on large segments of the population, such as the very young, the elderly, and people with suppressed immune systems.
However, there are less common molds that are called toxigens that represent a serious health threat. All molds flourish in the presence of moisture, and we make a concerted effort to look for any evidence of it wherever there could be a water source, including that from condensation. Interestingly, the molds that commonly appear on ceramic tiles in bathrooms do not usually constitute a health threat, but they should be removed. However, some visibly similar molds that form on cellulose materials, such as on drywall, plaster, and wood, are potentially toxigenic.
If mold is to be found anywhere within a home, it will likely be in the area of tubs, showers, toilets, sinks, water heaters, evaporator coils, inside attics with un-vented bathroom exhaust fans, and return-air compartments that draw outside air, all of which are areas that we inspect very conscientiously.
Nevertheless, mold can appear as though spontaneously at any time, so you should be prepared to monitor your home, and particularly those areas that we identified. Naturally, it is equally important to maintain clean air-supply ducts and to change filters as soon as they become soiled, because contaminated ducts are a common breeding ground for dust mites, rust, and other contaminants. Regardless, although some mold-like substances may be visually identified, the specific identification of molds can only be determined by specialists and laboratory analysis, and is absolutely beyond the scope of our regular home inspection. Nonetheless, as a prudent investment in environmental hygiene, we categorically recommend that you have your home tested for the presence of any such contaminants, and particularly if you or any member of your family suffers from allergies or asthma. Also, you can learn more about mold from an Environmental Protection Agency document entitled “A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture and Your Home” , by visiting their web site, from which it can be downloaded.
Real estate deals do not need to be abandoned!
If the home you were thinking about purchasing has mold, do not be overly alarmed. There are dozens of companies that perform mold remediation. The first step is to control the water problem. If the mold is removed, but the water problem was not resolved, the mold will simply come back. If the area is small enough, it can simply be removed. Mold on hard surfaces can be cleaned with bleach. Large scale mold issues should be handled professionally.