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Waiving home inspections can leave new homeowners with undetected mold

Undetected mold
Posted at 10:59 PM, Jun 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-01 06:54:50-04

CLEVELAND — With the demand for homes higher than the supply in Northeast Ohio, some buyers have been willing to take risks in order to win bidding wars, like waiving inspections. But that can leave some new homeowners with undetected problems—like mold.

It only takes 24 to 48 hours for mold to grow in wet, warm conditions like the area has seen over the past week, making the possibility of undetected mold even greater.

While basements, crawlspaces and attics are common places to look for mold, it can also go undetected behind walls, under floors and in cabinets or closets, especially in older homes.

Drew Lipold, owner of AdvataClean of The West Side—a company that provides water damage restoration, mold remediation, air duct cleaning and sanitizing services for residential and commercial buildings—said mold is not something to take lightly.

"All molds have the ability to cause asthma, cold like symptoms, watery eyes. Some, though, are actually can be deadly," Lipold said.

He has seen firsthand what waiving an inspection can look like.

"I was in one today, so I was up in an attic and they missed the mold in the attic," Lipold said.

AdvataClean of The West Side uses special tools to test for mold and toxins and then sends professional crews to clean and ventilate the area.

There are ways to stay competitive in the housing market while remaining safe, including opting for limited inspections that only look for things like mold or structural issues. Asking for an information only inspection where the seller won't be charged to make repairs is another option.

As for checking for mold in a home, looking at gutters, downspouts and the roof is the first step, ensuring there are no leaks and water is draining off and away from the home.

For visible mold, cleaning it with hydrogen peroxide, vinegar or baking soda is the best bet—but avoid bleach as it can promote more mold growth.

To learn more about AdvataClean of The West Side, click here.

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