In a market with many foreclosures, home buyers see more and moremoldy houses on the market. During the foreclosure process, a bankwill typically turn off the water, electricity and gas services tosave money. If the house has depended on a sump pump to keep it dry,water could fill the basement and even rise as high as the firstfloor!

You will see a similar problem when a house is not winterized; pipeswill freeze and burst, allowing water to pour into the house. Withouta source of heat to dry up the water, condensation will form on and inthe walls and stay there – a prime growing condition for mold. Withina few months, mold will appear on the drywall and on the wood insidethe walls. Many buyers will see mold or smell it and walk away fromthe house, if they don’t run from it. They’ve heard stories of blackmold and related health problems and don’t want anything to do withit.

But this could be good news for you. If you’re a rehabber, mold shouldmake you very happy. In fact, you can get very excited about a housewith mold. Why? Because most buyers stay away from a house with mold,you can often get deep discounts on moldy homes. Also, mold isn’t asdifficult to remediate as you might think.

Here’s why

1. Mold is easy to kill. Once the source of moisture is gone, a simplesolution of chlorine bleach will destroy mold and prevent it fromre-appearing.
2. Mold is rarely toxic.

If the area affected by moisture is small, less than ten square feet,you can repair the damage quite easily with these steps.

1. Repair the source of moisture.
2. Remove all moldy porous materials: drywall, carpet, wall paper.
3. Make sure there is no “hidden mold.” Check inside the walls ofareas that have been wet as well as under linoleum.
4. Remove all warped wooden floor boards.
5. Treat all affected wood with wood floor cleaner.
6. Damp wipe all non-porous surfaces with a solution of water anddetergent or water and chlorine bleach.
7. Replace materials you’ve taken away.

When mold is extensive or toxic, either hire a professional to containand remediate the moldy area, or research safety methods to protectyour health while you do the work. These methods include containment,breathing masks and wet vacuum cleaning.

For further questions about mold or a free estimate on repairing amold problem, contact Larry at ( 203 ) 387-0482

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