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A Year Later And There Is No "Toxic Mold..."

A year later and there is no "toxic mold..."

A little over year ago new neighbors moved in next door.  We had the initial greetings and are friendly, as neighbors should be. They have three children who are always happy to see me and I tease regularly.

A few weeks later they decided to finish their basement.

During the framing work, but just before the drywall was installed, we had a huge storm which dumped a couple of inches of rain.

The downspout indicated by the yellow arrow was angled such that it dropped its water directly into the corner on the ground.

The soil at that point was angled toward the house.  As such hundreds of gallons of rain water soaked right against the foundation wall, and a small amount came into the house.  A puddle had formed, which left a stain on the floor.

They called a company to help them with this DISASTER.  Long story short the solutions they proposed came to $10,000 - $12,000.  BUT,  my neighbors were told, the costs could go higher depending on what they found.

So what to do?  They asked me for my opinions on all this.  As I heard the story I could only smile, and they asked me what I was smiling about.  My answer?  "Let me get Mighty Mo and I will show you."

The water had come in between the slab and foundation wall.  With Mighty Mo (my thermal camera) I could show them there was no residual moisture, and I found no cracking in the foundation wall.  Going outside I showed them how the downspout and soil grading had caused the problem and the VERY CHEAP fix to prevent this from happening again.

They were astonished that my proposed solution was so cheap! 

Cheap is right.  Less than $200.

The materials needed - dirt, and an extension to the downspout.

The mulch and plants are the finishing touch, but do nothing to solve the problem.

The soil is built up, and the downspout is buried and extends to well beyond the foundation wall to the left.  Similarly the other downspout in the upper photo, on the left near the tree, is also extended out about 5' from the corner of the house.

There have been multiple heavy rains since this solution with no water getting into the house.

THIS IS IMPORTANT - WHEN THE "DRY BASEMENT" COMPANY HEARD ABOUT MY SOLUTION THEY WENT INTO OVERDRIVE!  THEY ATTACKED ME AS IGNORANT, MY SOLUTION AS INSUFFICIENT AND IDIOCY, AND OF COURSE THEY HAD TO SAY THAT MY SOLUTION WOULD TO LEAD TO "TOXIC MOLD"  DEVELOPMENT, AND ALL THREE CHILDREN WOULD EVENTUALLY MELT AND DIE.

Perhaps I embellished that a bit with the last three words.  But they always mention "the children."

Not to get into a long discussion here, but there is no such thing as "toxic mold."  That is the term all the dry basement and mold companies use, literally to scare people, but it is a misnomer.

From the CDC"The term "toxic mold" is not accurate. While certain molds are toxigenic, meaning they can produce toxins (specifically mycotoxins), the molds themselves are not toxic, or poisonous. Hazards presented by molds that may produce mycotoxins should be considered the same as other common molds which can grow in your house. There is always a little mold everywhere - in the air and on many surfaces. There are very few reports that toxigenic molds found inside homes can cause unique or rare health conditions such as pulmonary hemorrhage or memory loss. These case reports are rare, and a causal link between the presence of the toxigenic mold and these conditions has not been proven."

The two underlines are mine.  And there is more:  "Mold exposure does not always present a health problem indoors. However some people are sensitive to molds. These people may experience symptoms such as nasal stuffiness, eye irritation, wheezing, or skin irritation when exposed to molds. Some people may have more severe reactions to molds.  The Institute of Medicine (IOM) also found limited or suggestive evidence linking indoor mold exposure and respiratory illness in otherwise healthy children."

Again, the underlines are mine.  And the always-touted-as-dangerous black mold?  "Mold growing in homes and buildings, whether it is Stachybotrys chartarum (Stachybotrys atra) or other molds, indicates that there is a problem with water or moisture. This is the first problem that needs to be addressed. Mold growth can be removed from hard surfaces with commercial products, soap and water, or a bleach solution of no more than 1 cup of bleach in 1 gallon of water. Mold in or under carpets typically requires that the carpets be removed. Once mold starts to grow in insulation or wallboard, the only way to deal with the problem is by removal and replacement."

Really, it's that easy? 

Mold is NEVER the problem - moisture is the problem.  Mold is a SYMPTOM of the presence of moisture.  If you eliminate the moisture you eliminate the problem.  And I am a "Certified Mold Inspector" and understand this!

And in this house it is a year later and there is no "toxic mold..."  What do you know!

My recommendation:  I tell clients all the time that I have no financial interest in circumstances such as this one and to please call me when contractors tell them this or that.  I say - "I will always be honest with you."  Sometimes people believe me and sometimes they don't.  When they hear terms such as "toxic mold" and "health hazard" and they are justifiably scared.  Well, SOME people have sensitivity to Goldenrod and Maple Tree pollens, and in that sense they are "health hazards."  As I said, sometimes clients believe me and sometimes they don't.  I believe me.

P.s.  In my experience Lysol spray works better to kill molds than a bleach solution.  Just sayin'...

 

 

Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC  

Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.

Office (703) 330-6388   Cell (703) 585-7560

www.jaymarinspect.com


Comment balloon 70 commentsJay Markanich • August 09 2016 04:32AM

Comments

Good morning Jay,

It is always best to have an honest opinion and reasons for why something went wrong.

Make yourself an astonishing day.

Posted by Raymond E. Camp, Licensed Real Estate Salesperson Greater Rochester (Howard Hanna Real Estate Services) almost 3 years ago

Thanks Raymond.  This is longer than my usual post, but it's important stuff.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Solutions need not be complicated...it appears that the "foundation specialists" in many markets are very special with their solutions....and prices !

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) almost 3 years ago

I'm pretty sure they are the same everywhere, S&D, with expensive solutions and nasty comments about people like me.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Good morning Jay. Sometimes it pays to get a second opinion. Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker - Retired (Wayne M Martin) almost 3 years ago

Wayne - and here I could have handled it for much cheaper than that company - only $5K - 9K.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Good for you for providing a solution that was cost effective and appropriate. I bet your neighbors LOVE you and Mighty Mo!

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, Monroe NY, 914-419-0270, kat@thehousekat.com) almost 3 years ago

Solution providers are problem solvers and are rare to come by Jay Markanich - usually we all end up with more problems than we started with! Thanks for sharing your insights

Posted by Jennifer Mackay, Your Bay County Florida Realtor 850.774.6582 (Counts Real Estate Group, Inc.) almost 3 years ago

It's interesting how some provide solutions and others provide Rube Goldberg repairs! Interesting read Jay Markanich thanks!

Posted by Jessie Cochran, Panama City Realty Group (Counts Real Estate Group, Inc.) almost 3 years ago

OMG, Toxic Mold! We're all gonna die! I gotta go buy some bleach, have a great day!

Posted by Fred Hernden, CMI, Albuquerque area Master Inspector (Superior Home Inspections - Greater Albuquerque Area) almost 3 years ago

Kat - the important thing is they believed me!  Usually the "professionals" are the believed party and I am not.  And they do love me - besides, I'm really cute.

Thanks Jennifer, and that is true.  Some things require critical thinking, which is sorrowfully lacking in so many.

Jessie - I akin it to killing an ant with a sledge hammer - it works, but not needed.

Fred - every mold class I have ever had the teacher has said that bleach just pisses the mold off, and not to use it.  It doesn't kill the hyphae, so the mold returns in force.  But Lysol is a killer's killer!

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Jay, I had to laugh about the kids melting and dying, sorry... LOL. What a load of crap those contractors tried to feed your neighbors and it is a very good thing they called you. 

I learned long ago from a mold inspection company about taking care of mold in the house. Never use bleach. Bleach is about 99% water, all it does is hydrate the mold and bleach it white. It SEEMS as if it is gone. It also irritates the mold which causes it to spray its spores across the room. I was told to use Murphys Oil Soap, with as little water as possible. Strong detergent will kill most mold. 

Unless it is the black toxic mold that eats small children in the middle of the night! Nothing kills that. Ever... 

Posted by Andrea Swiedler, Realtor, Southern Litchfield County CT (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices New England Properties) almost 3 years ago

Andrea - I tried to be gentle about the bleach at the end of the post.  Most people use bleach for everything.  My reason was in my comment to Fred above.

And as to the black mold - I think it will definitely survive the nuclear war.  If, and that's IF, we don't all melt and die first.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Hi Jay Markanich wow....what a great story...you were like superman and came to the rescue....you saved those neighbors a chunk of cash!!!  nice job....and no toxic mold a year later.... and I read 950 words!!!

Posted by Barbara Todaro, Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team (RE/MAX Executive Realty ) almost 3 years ago

Thanks Miss B!

These folks listened to me.

I am NOT bragging.  I tell all my clients to please call me when something comes up, that I will always be honest with them.  This was the case here.  I wish they would all give me a shot.

Just got a call today from a client who was told by an electrician that to replace the old smoke detectors the whole house had to be rewired!  I said I was glad they called and simply sent them a link to a blog I had written on the subject!  That one was about 900 words also, because I explain how to do it!

That's right - Jay Man!

Geez - I just noticed that somewhere along the way the post lost my first photo!  It is there now, again.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Hello Jay,

This is a great overview of the mold problem. Someone asked me to look at a new construction for potential mold problems. I think they scratched their heads as I spent a lot of time analyzing the finish grading around the house and essentially suggested the same attention to water issues as you do.

My final advice was "don't skip the home inspection.," alluding to the additional training and thermal imaging you can provide. I can tell generally if a house is well-built or slapped-up, but foundation issues can be tricky to spot.

There is a "Mold Doctor" in a nearby community whom I suspect has ties to a mold mitigation specialist. That's all I'll say, but I see the potential for a very expensive fix being prescribed.

If water can be removed rapidly and does not soak into drywall, insulation or carpet, the fix is cheap, but if these have to be removed, it seems that you should always treat the remaining structure with an oxygen bleach and mold retardant. Opening and drying being essential in the 'classic' mitigation strategies. UltraMean-2 in a non-chlorine solution for initial treatment and should be followed up with UltraBan, which is supposed to keep mold from recurring.

The trick here is to avoid copious use of chlorine or amonia and NEVER let the two mix... you get mustard gas! I suspect some mold related illness to be coming from the cleaners.

Posted by Bob Kirchman, Residential Design, Repurposing Existing Spaces. (The Kirchman Studio) almost 3 years ago

Thanks Bob.  Grading is essential!  And foundations don't make very good boats.

As to the mustard gas the CDC website says the same thing - no mixo!

Perfect Spanish...

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

P.s.  Good to see you joined AR!  It has been a boon to me.  Hope it works out the same for you!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Well done, Jay. You gave these folks some common sense advice and didn't use fear to to wave the flame of disaster in order to make money. 

Posted by Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD, REALTORS® in Clark County, WA (ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors) almost 3 years ago

Great post thank you for sharing and I read the entire post , seems if it is worth reading folks may just read the entire post. Hmmm who would have thought that ... 

Posted by Laura Filip, What can we do for you today? (Laura Filip Broker , Opening doors for All Seasons of Life ) almost 3 years ago

I, too, have heard that Lysol works better on mold than bleach (although, I've never had an inspector say it... so it's nice to confirm)...

Water always wins... it's a constant battle to keep water infiltration from occurring in our dwellings.  And mold is a strong indicator that we have a water infiltration issue.

Posted by Alan May, Helping you find your way home. (Coldwell Banker Residential) almost 3 years ago

That's an interesting and remarkable story!  It's deplorable that companies use scare tactics to separate nice people from their money.  You're an honest and trusted resource for your neighbors and clients to get the straight scoop.    

Posted by Jill Murty, Realtor - Orange County, CA (PREA Realty) almost 3 years ago

It's amazing to me how contractors mostly "upsell" whatever is wrong. I've had that with chimney and heating contractors recently. In the end, we need to help our clients look at alternatives from these expensive "fixes." Thanks for this additional mold insight. Thank heavens I have a great home inspection company I suggest to my clients.

Posted by Hella M. Rothwell, Broker/Realtor®, Rothwell Realty Inc. CA#01968433 Carmel-by-the-Sea almost 3 years ago

The only thing that is going to die from mold is the "mold is gold industry."  It is going to die from the truth about mold.

Posted by Charles Buell, Seattle Home Inspector (Charles Buell Inspections Inc.) almost 3 years ago

Your neighbors were lucky they chose a home next door to an expert!!  I hope they invited you for a fabulous dinner, at the very least.

Posted by Maureen Bray Portland OR Home Stager ~ Room Solutions Staging, "Staging that Sells Portland Homes" (Room Solutions Staging, Portland OR) almost 3 years ago

I love your solution. With our drought in California I would have lengthened the drain leading to a cistern or storage to use to water the lawn

Posted by Caroline Gerardo, C. G. Barbeau the Loan Lady nmls 324982 (CMG Financial) almost 3 years ago

D&B - as I say to people, I have no financial interest in what opinions I give.   The solution here was obvious and straight forward, and for that company to trash me for it was expected.

Laura - thanks!  I don't very often write such long posts.  Glad you read it!

I have always used Lysol when I have found mold in my house, Alan, and it works 100%.  Bleach makes mold really mad, it seems.

Jill - scare tactics have been used since the beginning of marketing!  Turn on the TV to see all the drugs that you can profit from having used!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Hella - that's part of the program!  I have seen chimney people really bust up the truth when it comes to those "problems."  Lately my clients have suffered from electricians telling them stories, like the kitchen GFI that tripped and an electrician told a client of mine that it was about $3000 because of all the rewiring he would need to do.  She called me in a panic and I listened to her push the reset button over the phone.  She was AMAZED that I would be, um, honest.

Charlie - woulda, coulda that that might be true!  The scammers shall always be with you.  I think that's a verse in the Bible.

Maureen - my neighbors come to me all the time.  And I am the neighborhood repository for house keys to have available in emergencies!

Caroline - I know that in certain areas that is a normal thing to do!  Not here yet, fortunately for us.

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

I just had a client spend $2500 to remove mold from the attic.  They were supposedly reputable people, but one never knows for sure.

Great information . . . and I believe you!

Posted by Margaret Goss, Chicago's North Shore & Winnetka Real Estate (Baird & Warner Real Estate) almost 3 years ago

I love knowing people like you! Not everything is an emergency.

Posted by Karen Fiddler, Broker/Owner, Orange County & Lake Arrowhead, CA (949)510-2395 (Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Broker 949-510-2395) almost 3 years ago

Jay, how fortunate they have you as their neighbor. Of course the children are going to melt and die because the dishonest company won't make bank off your unsuspecting neighbors. 

Posted by Kathleen Daniels, San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist (KD Realty - 408.972.1822) almost 3 years ago

Jay, I laughed very hard - you do a great job of using humor and irreverence to make an important point - it's the moisture that is a problem.

Posted by Patricia Kennedy, Home in the Capital (RLAH Real Estate) almost 3 years ago

Margaret - I feel bad just reading that!

Thank you Karen.  I carry a grain of salt in my pocket.  Ask Pat below.

Kathleen - I saw the kids just yesterday.  Nothing has melted yet.

Pat - such it is!  In my world the scammers would be in the top 4 or 5 for giving back.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Love it, Jay.  That company not only lost a potential client but has a lot of egg on their face --- often problems can be solved without thousands of dollars, and glad your neighbors were lucky to have you save them as much!

Posted by John Meussner, #MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852 (Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA,) almost 3 years ago

Thanks John.  It's too bad but my neighbors were so glad not to have to pay the money they probably never thought about giving the company a review of their "suggestions."

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

The mold scares have died down in my area...as people finally caught on to exactly what you point out - moisture is the problem.  And as Patricia Kennedy already stated Jay Markanich you do a great job of humor and irreverence to make an important point.

Posted by Lisa Von Domek, ....Experience Isn't Expensive.... It's Priceless! (Lisa Von Domek Team) almost 3 years ago

That is my schtick, Lisa.  And a little silly.

But I try to get out good information, and think I do!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Yikes! This shows why you need second or third opinions! That's awesome you were able to save them money- I bet your name will come up many times in conversation with their friends!

Posted by Chrissi Chapman Topoleski, HOME~There is no place like it! (Re/Max Real Estate Connections) almost 3 years ago

I have saved many people money just this week Chrissi!  Like I say, I will always be honest with my clients (and neighbors).

Say, I've heard of Haymarket!  I was there just today, along with Lorton.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Have to laugh over your 'children will eventually melt & die'. Those are the perfect buzz words to use against a parent.

Hopefully they made you a steak dinner on the barbie.

Posted by Lyn Sims, Schaumburg IL Real Estate (RE/MAX Suburban) almost 3 years ago

It is always a disaster to those looking to sell a solution Jay Markanich , nice advice and i hope your neighbors appreciated your wisdom

Posted by Scott Godzyk, One of Manchester NH's Leading Agents (Godzyk Real Estate Services) almost 3 years ago

Florida has more mold scare tactics than probably any other state.  Lysol takes care of most issues that we run across and I have only run across one truly warranted mold remediation action.  

 

Posted by Marnie Matarese, Showing you the best of Sarasota! (DWELL REAL ESTATE) almost 3 years ago

Thanks for sharing your story, very educational. And I like knowing that Lysol spray is a more effective solution than bleach.

Posted by Melissa Spittel, "Achieving Results Together " (Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage) almost 3 years ago

Dear Jay,

Great advice. Liquids always flow downhil, so if you give them a little uphill in the way, they go the other direction. Right into your rain garden with all the pretty flowers, that love the extra water.

Posted by Dörte Engel, ABC - Annapolis, Bowie, Crofton & rest of Maryland (RE/MAX Leading Edge) almost 3 years ago

Lyn - it's always about "the children," isn't it!?  Especially with politicians.  Barf.

Scott - well, they still wave.  Okay, maybe a little more than that...

Marnie - the biggest action is getting rid of the mold-infested thing - carpet, drywall, etc. 

Melissa - it really is!  And, by the way, I went to Western Maryland College.  I hear they call it something else now.  My favorite thing was going to an old-time shop on the main street, with candy still in jars, and getting a big bag of freshly roasted peanuts.  Still warm I would eat them while walking back to my dorm!

I just had a big reunion there, you should know!

I try to divert my water toward trees Dorte.  They seem to like it!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

The least expensive solution is often the one hardest to find.  In this case they were lucky they did not have  at "toxic" relationship with the strange guy next door! Well done!

Posted by Gary L. Waters Broker Associate, Bucci Realty, Fifteen Years Experience in Brevard County (Bucci Realty, Inc.) almost 3 years ago

Not sure about that Gary!  But the guy next door is okay, by any stretch!

 

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Spot on Jay!  I have a problem in my own home and I thought I was smelling mold.  But, in fact I'm smelling toxic air from my attic!  My attic has no mold as I ran an air test, rather the mold company did, and wala - nothing . My problem turns out to be the off-gassing from spray foam insulation under the roof deck.  It heats up in the afternoon and smells terrible.  My solution, seal the rigid ducts that are allowing the smell inside my home.  I hope that works!  I'm getting that done at cost from the guy that sold me the Icynene spray foam job.  Sometimes we just don't know?! 

Posted by Jan Green, HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN (Value Added Service, 602-620-2699) almost 3 years ago

There is a lot we have yet to learn about Icynene, Jan.  The off gassing is said to be a problem post facto, but "they" don't yet know what it is doing to people.

I had a building supervisor on a pre-drywall inspection the other day tell my clients that as soon as they are done spraying the foam the off-gassing stops.  I had to insert myself and say, "That is entirely incorrect."

Six years ago I had two different posts on Icynene.  Here is the second:

http://activerain.com/blogsview/1414064/icynene-insulation-follow-up

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

I had a conversation with a fellow who worked in Florida and when he visited a vacant home got infected with with Black Mold that nearly killed him off. It forms sores within the body on the organs no less. Mold is not joke! Good post

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) almost 3 years ago

Fungal infections happen Richie, but not necessarily due to black mold.  Could have been though,  as everyone has allergies.  But a lot of the initial "studies" saying what black mold does to people were later proven to be off base.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

I think many of these companies are just using fear to make huge profits. A few years ago I had an REO listing. It was on a well. The banks started out sourcing property preservation work so the low bidder did the winterization before I got the property assigned. They did it wrong and when the electric was turned on the well started (should have been disabled) and the water heater inlet line leaked (they reconnected but didn't tighten it).

I immediately got a contractor in to remove carpet and cut out and drywall that got wet as well as dry the place out. We disclosed the incident to the eventual buyer. His agent recommented a mold inspection. They paid close to $400 for what they thought was an inspection but turned out to be an "initial consultation". The actual inspection would be $3800. That's for an inspection, no remediation if mold was found. The buyer decided to pass on the inspection but bought the house. The mold inspection company called him repeatedly with horror stories trying to scare him into doing it.

Five years later I ran into the buyer and we talked. No mold issues five years later.

Posted by Patrick Willard almost 3 years ago

You approached it exactly the right way, Patrick.  Get rid of the problem areas and dry it out!  And you are right, they will continue to call and call, and scare and scare.  Always - follow the money.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

That's a great story and a good reminder to get some other opinions from different sources. 

Posted by Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089, Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info (Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers) almost 3 years ago

Black Mold is Like BIG Gold to some people... including doctors who feed into the fear.  you are so right... it is a moisture problem... find the moisture and cure it and the rest will follow... you are very wise! great post!

Posted by Debra Leisek ( Bay Realty,Inc Homer Alaska) almost 3 years ago

Georgie - the best opinions probably come from people who have no financial interest in offering them!

Debra - for sure.  And thank you!  The medical industry is another big bucks area, as you say!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Jay Markanich - well, they always want big 'dough' - for whatever the solution is, isn't it? (And they want to prove themselves right by proving someone wrong!)

Posted by Praful Thakkar, Andover, MA: Andover Luxury Homes For Sale (LAER Realty Partners) almost 3 years ago

You are right Praful.  My objective is not to prove anyone right or wrong, just to solve the problem!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

You're so right about the root cause of the problem.   And, it does seem that some overreact and some contractors use these scare tactics.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) almost 3 years ago

Debbie - I hear unbelievable stories from people about the "scare tactics" you mention.  In my opinion a lot of it is scam.  The difference is that what these companies propose are not bad in that they might "solve" a problem, but the proposals do so at outrageous costs.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Hi, Jay!  I included this post on today's Last Week's Favorites list.  Hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend!

 

Posted by Patricia Kennedy, Home in the Capital (RLAH Real Estate) almost 3 years ago

Thanks Miss Pattie!  I will have to tell my neighbors!  They have no idea they have been featured in such a way on my AR blog.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

Jay- I just bookmarked this because we are always talking about mold here in Florida.  We did find a minuscule amount of mold in a closet when we were in VA.  The fix was easy- we eliminated the water issue.  When Larry was building down here they had to get a mold expert because everyone was up in arms over mold. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) almost 3 years ago

Kathy - there is a lot of dis and misinformation about mold.  And it's easy - urban legends are believed by all!

And remember - the radon in granite counter tops.  Oh, oh, and the leukemia from living near power lines.  We're all gonna melt and die, I tell you!

Says he, with a wink.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

These moisture companies are SUCH a rip off - at least MANY of them are!  You really have to pick and choose and my first approach after an inspector has hinted at 'toxic mold' is to diagnose the problem...THEN, if one of my contractors says it's something serious, take it to the mold remediation folks that I know and trust.  It just makes me sick at how much these folks over-charge.  

Great job finding the solution and your neighbors being toxic-mold-free for a year!!

Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods (www.iCharlotteHomes.com | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) almost 3 years ago

Debe - the information is out there, and from credible sources like the CDC and Mayo Clinic.  But people still fall for the hype and tactics.  Urban Legends are hard to dismiss!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) almost 3 years ago

I recommend straight vinegar or hydrogen peroxide.  You can also use one after the other if needed. 

Posted by Rafi Footerman, Home Inspector, Mold Inspector, Radon and More! (Mid Jersey Inspections) over 2 years ago

If it kills the mold, the mold is killed, Rafi!

My wife swears by white vinegar for everything!

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) over 2 years ago

Interesting post and discussions.  Great information on a toxic subject.

Posted by Peter Mohylsky, SoWal Is HOME., Let me help you find your path to the beach. (Gulf Place @ 30A) about 2 years ago

Thanks, Peter.  Mold is one of those things that gets a lot of press, and mostly wrong press.

Posted by Jay Markanich, Home Inspector - servicing all Northern Virginia (Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC) about 2 years ago

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