Posted on: 29 November 2021Share
Mold is the new four-letter word in real estate. No one wants to buy a house with mold, but what are your options when the home inspection turns up with mold?
When you write an offer on a home, it is standard procedure to include an inspection contingency, sometimes called an inspection rider. This is typically a separate piece of paper that states the buyers will be performing a home inspection within a certain number of days and, if the results of that inspection are not satisfactory, they have the right to walk away from the transaction without any penalty. Essentially, an inspection contingency gives you an 'out' if the inspector discovers serious damage to the home, like foundation issues, asbestos, or mold. It is unwise to write an offer without an inspection contingency, even in a fast-paced, seller's market.
When mold is discovered during a home inspection, buyers have three options. They can walk away from the transaction and look for another house to call home. They could also try to renegotiate with the sellers based on their findings. Some buyers may want the sellers to clean up the mold and repair any damage themselves before closing. Other buyers may prefer to renegotiate for a lower price and clean up the mold with their own mold removal contractors after closing.
A third option is to do nothing and move forward with the buying process anyway. Renegotiating the original offer, even due to an issue that was discovered during the inspection, gives the sellers the right to walk away from the contract, which may not be worth the risk to some buyers.
Mold removal is a two-part process. Not only does the mold need to be removed, but the source of the moisture needs to be found and repaired. This could be something as simple as repairing a leaky roof or faucet, to a complicated issue, like re-grading the exterior of a home to direct water away from the foundation. Once the source is located, the mold removal team can work on removing the mold, cleaning any hard surfaces of mold spores, and removing any soft, organic surfaces, like wood or drywall, that the mold spores have infiltrated.
The mold removal services company needs to warranty their work, and the warranty needs to transfer to you once the sale of the home is complete. Mold can be a serious issue, and you need to have the assurance that if it returns, or worsens, that the mold remediation company will come back at no charge and finish the job.
Finding mold in a home does not necessarily mean that you should walk away. It is important to not only be protected with an inspection contingency, but to also use a reputable mold removal company to clean everything up. Contact a mold removal service near you to learn more.