Why and When to Hire a Mold Inspector

Here are five reasons to consider a more extensive on-site investigation for toxic or allergenic mold:

  1. People in the building are at particular health risk: elderly, infant, immune-impaired, asthmatic, history of respiratory illness or other medical complaints which might be caused by or aggravated by mold, allergens, or other bioaerosols
  2. People in the building are sick and there is reason to suspect that the building is causing or contributing to health, air quality, or similar concerns. You need a building or apartment evaluation and diagnosis to answer the question that may be posed by your doctor: might the building be contributing to or causing these complaints?
  3. The building has or is suspected of having had a history of significant leak events or even a single event which flooded some areas: plumbing leaks, roof leaks, ice dam leaks, basement water entry, sewer backup, ventilation problems, air conditioning system problems; forced-air central heating/cooling concerns. If hidden building cavities have been wet, the mold you see may be just the tip of a "mold iceberg" that does need an expert to find the extent of mold, cause of mold, and to remove the mold.
  4. Large areas of water damage or mold contamination have been seen and you need an estimate of the extent of demolition and mold remediation which will be needed to make a proper cleanup and repair.

    Small mold problems: If you are confident that the amount of mold is less than 30 sq. ft. of contiguous mold (and that there is no significant risk of a larger hidden mold problem) then the NY City mold remediation guidelines suggest that professional remediation is not appropriate. You do not need to hire someone other than perhaps a handyman or general cleaning service. BEWARE: if during cleanup of a small mold problem you discover that it is actually a large one, stop work and bring in a professional to advise you on how to proceed.

    Large mold problems: If more than 30 sq. ft. of mold-infected material is found or is already visible, then you need professional advice as more serious health risks and mold contamination may be involved.

  5. Contractors have already bid a variety of expensive mold-cleanup approaches to building cleanup/remediation and you need an unbiased, informed professional to help sort out these proposals