Mold is one of the primary causes of health problems related to poor indoor air quality, but people are typically unaware that it is mold that is making them ill. Infants and the elderly are more prone to mold infection, and many people of all ages can be affected by molds ability to trigger allergic and asthmatic reactions.
Because of molds ability to cause health problems and diminish property value mold inspections should be done when water damage occurs, when humidity is a problem indoors, or when musty odors or health problems related to time spent indoors are suspected.
The difficult task is finding an expert mold inspector who will be able to properly find the mold, diagnose its cause, and provide recommendations regarding removing the mold from the home.
Tips to finding an expert mold inspector:
The first and foremost thing to consider while searching for a mold inspector is proper licensing, unfortunately few states offer licenses for mold inspectors. In 2011 Texas, New Jersey, and Florida were some of the only states requiring mold inspection licenses.
Another important consideration is certification of the inspector. Many certifications exist, how do you know what to look for? If the mold inspector has one of the three below certifications then the mold inspector may be capable of locating and diagnosing mysterious moisture leaks, complex humidity issues, and hidden mold, or mold odor problems.
A properly certified professional in mold inspections should have more knowledge in regard to mold problems. Look for one of the three below certifications:
- A Certified Industrial Hygienist.
- A Certified Indoor Environmentalist.
- A Certified Indoor Environmental Consultant.
Legal expert witness experience
Find out if the inspector has conducted inspection for attorneys on mold related legal cases.
Search online to see if the perspective mold inspector is known as an expert in the field. Some inspectors have written professional articles that have been published online; some have even written books on mold. Such inspectors are likely to have more knowledge and take the field more seriously than someone who only has a small add in the local phone book.
Better Business Bureau Review:
Also look for references on the mold inspectors website, or even better look for a link on the inspectors website to the firms better business bureau rating.
Ask about experience; look for as mu ch experience as possible. Many people will mislead you and give the combined experience of all the inspectors in the office; this is only fine if all the inspectors in the office will be doing your inspection. Many will give unrelated experience, this is very common. You can check on a state website such as sunbiz.org to see how long a company has been incorporated.
Mold testing tools:
Make a visit to the mold inspectors website and check out the tools and methods which are used by the inspector to test mold and indoor air quality problems. Mold testing is almost as important as the inspection. A well experienced mold inspector will be using the latest tools to detect mold and moisture.
Additions IAQ services offered:
Please do not let a mold inspector talk you into testing services that are not required. Often a problem can be diagnoses by an inspection without extensive and expensive testing, however the more qualified m old testing consultants will keep an eye out for other issues besides mold. Such persons should be able to conduct IAQ testing, chemical testing, allergen, and mold testing if such services appear to be needed and are paid for and requested. An expert mold inspector should use IAQ testing to find the indoor air quality issue even if it is not mold related because poor indoor air quality will cause health issues similar to those caused by mold. Please be advised that this may require a second visit and a second fee. In the majority of cases this is not required but your consultant should be able to provide such if required and paid for.
Check whether the fee structure is consistent with that is being charged in the industry. In Palm Beach county mold inspectors often charge between $400.00 and $1,000.00 for most residential inspections requiring 3 to 8 samples. Commercial building mold testing fees vary greatly depending on the size of the prop erty. The fees may sound high but believe me that we inspectors are no getting rich and the fee you pay is worth it because your health is your real wealth.
These are 2011 prices.
All these tips may guide you in choosing an experienced mold inspector for your homes or building mold inspection.
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