It is said that a home inspector looks at a house from top to bottom. And that is certainly true.
Often what is happening on top can be manifest at the bottom!
Why? Gravity and things, like water, flow downhill.
So when I saw a couple of roof problems, part of the manifestation of those problems was visible in the front of the house.
My client asked if what we saw here could be causing a problem indoors.
"Certainly!" I said. "We'll look."
You know what? We looked!
Merely 10' away from this problem, in the corner of the room under the roofing issues, and removing the easy chair, we saw this.
That appears to be microbial growth.
Yes, that's right, mold. Mold is not the problem (although it is a problem). Mold is the symptom of the problem. The problem, in this case, is water flowing downhill!
Moisture is trapped inside this wall and by the framing on top of the basement ceiling. Having no where to go, it stops, and feeds any and every microbes residing there, encouraging microbial growth!
It's a simple formula really. Microbes need food and air and water and then they do what they do best!
My recommendation: when you are looking at a house, start at the top and see what it might be doing to the bottom! Things really do flow downhill. Water from there could be getting here. Water from here could be getting there. It's not rocket science, just fluid dynamics!
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560