What is the Average Cost of Mold Inspection in the Atlanta Area?
When buying any home in the Atlanta area, you should get a mold inspection. So the first question is: How much does a mold inspection cost? Fist know it is a different process from typical home inspection. The cost will vary depending on the size of the house. How do you know if company conducting the inspection is qualified?
How much does it cost to get a mold inspection?
On average, mold inspection costs $300 to $400 for homes below 4,000 square feet. Above 4,000 square feet, the cost increases to the $700 to $900 range. These costs are for inspection only and do not include testing or remediation of the mold. Addition factors that could effect the cost is travel time and if the inspector will need to remove sheet-rock for a deeper inspection.
Mold is a fungus, and like all fungi, it thrives in moist places. Mold spreads by emitting spores, microscopic particles. Spores float around in the air until they land on a surface.Not all mold is bad so there is no reason to remove all mold spores from a house.
Mold spores only form mold when they land on a moist surface. By keeping the interior of your home dry, you can avoid having any problems with mold. The best way to prevent mold in your home is to repair leaks in your roof, clean up spills, check plumbing or HVAC system and make sure your kitchen and bathroom are properly ventilated.
Mold damages the surface it is growing on and may aggravate allergies or asthma.
If you can see mold in the cracks and corners of your walls definitely means it is growing and spreading more spores. Mold may also grow in places you cannot see, such as in your ducts or between your walls. It may also form colonies so tiny they escape the eye.
Water damage. If your basement flooded, roof leaked, or a broken pipe sprayed water all over the kitchen, you need to inspect for mold. Any place that is wet for more than 48 hours could become contaminated by mold.
If a house has been unoccupied. If a house has been closed up and unoccupied for months or years, humidity could have built up inside and caused mold to grow. This is especially a problem in Georgia where we have warmer high humidity climate.
After mold remediation. If you have gone through the often expensive and difficult steps to deal with a mold problem, regular mold inspections are a good idea to make sure you really got rid of it all.
Mold testing vs. mold inspection
If you are researching mold, you might come across different services and costs that list both mold inspection and mold testing. Mold inspection simply identifies the presence of mold and generally defines the size of the problem, usually in square footage.
Mold inspection is, for the most part, a visual inspection of a house. A moisture meter might also be useful in determining if a particular area is wet. Your inspector will need to access restricted areas (like removing grates to inspect HVAC ducts). Some mold inspectors may use cameras.
If there is a chance mold is growing in an inaccessible space, the inspector may have to damage a section of drywall or remove paneling to get a better look. If mold is detected, the inspector will try to find the source of the moisture that is causing the mold and talk to the homeowner to develop a remediation plan.
What affects the cost of a mold inspection?
There are two main factors that affect the cost of a mold inspection: the size of the house being inspected and whether or not the inspector has to remove or destroy parts of the property, such as drywall or paneling, to complete the inspection
Finding the right mold inspector
Look for a contractor with specific experience and expertise in mold inspections and remediation. Ask them how many mold remediations they’ve done in the last six months. There might be a wide price range, so shopping around could save you a few hundred dollars.
After the inspection: If the mold inspection finds mold in your home, the next step is to make a remediation plan. This always begins with removing the source of the moisture that’s allowing the mold to grow. If you fail to remove the moisture, you can clean up all the mold and it will just grow back. Then, hard surfaces can be scrubbed and washed. Soft surfaces like carpets or foam tiles have to be cut out and replaced. It is impossible to clean all the mold off of porous surfaces.
This can be a do-it-yourself job if the mold is only in a small area. If the mold contamination exceeds 10 square feet, the EPA recommends calling in a contractor experienced in mold remediation. Mold can be dangerous, or at least unpleasant, to work with, especially for someone with allergies or asthma. That’s why larger contaminations are better left to professionals with the correct safety gear and cleaning equipment.
What can a home owner in Atlanta do to preventing mold?
The best solution to mold problems is to prevent mold in the first place. Tips on preventing mold in Atlanta, Suwanee, Duluth and other Georgia homes:
Repair leaks promptly. Fix leaks and keep moisture out of your house.
Control humidity. Use a dehumidifier in your basement and run air-conditioning when possible during the summer.
If your basement floods or condensation from your air-conditioner drips onto a carpet, dry everything out within 24 to 48 hours.
Install vents in your kitchen and bathroom.
Spotting mold contamination before it grows out of control can save you thousands of dollars. This makes the cost of a mold inspection well worth a few hundred dollars when you are buying a new house.
If you are worried about the possibility of mold in your Atlanta home, feel free to call us and R4Clean would be glad to set up a time that is convent for you to make a through inspection of your property.