Mold has become a controversial subject over the past five to ten years. The main reason for this is because some unscrupulous individuals have entered the mold industry simply to take advantage of unknowing property owners and businesses. Therefore, if you think you may have a ‘mold problem’ proceed with care.
If you are a property owner, builder, general contractor, property manager, or insurance company there are several things to consider when determining if you have a mold problem:
- Amount, type, and location of mold growth
- Function of the building (hospital, commercial, residential, etc.)
- Health of building’s occupants
- Liability issues for the building owner, property manager, etc.
Caution must be taken when dealing with people who may have a compromised immune system. These individuals are potentially susceptible to fungal infections, which may be life treating. Must healthy individuals are not susceptible to fungal infections but may feel the allergenic effects (irritation of eyes - nose - throat, headaches, etc.) that airborne mold spores can cause.
BEWARE OF THE FOLLOWING
- Beware of companies that perform both mold assessments and mold remediation.
Many states (not including Wisconsin) have enacted laws that prevent companies from performing both mold assessments and mold remediation because performing both is a major conflict-of-interest. Those companies directly profit by convincing their clients that they have an extensive mold problem that will require thousands of dollars in remediation.
Protect yourself by hiring a third party consultant to design the scope-of-work for remediation. A scope-of-work designed by IAQ Diagnostics will outline which remediation steps are necessary.
- Beware of home inspectors who also perform mold inspections
Often times, these individuals will have little or no training in the field and will be unable to write you a scope-of-work for remediation.
- Beware… not all certifications are legitimate
Many states (including Wisconsin) do not have state-certifications for companies who perform mold inspections and mold remediation.
Companies that claim to be certified have been done so by individual associations, not the state. Some associations have strict standards for the certification process, while others have extremely loose standards. A quality certification will require:
- Bachelor of Science degree in Microbiology, Mycology, Engineering, Industrial Hygiene, Environmental Science
- A minimum of two (2) years experience in the field
- Attendance of a certification course (four (4) to five (5) days in length)
- Completion of a certification examination