Attics and Black Mold: A Common Oversight

Want to grab the attention of a homeowner, prospective buyer or tenant? Just say the word, “black mold” and you have got it! Attics and black mold, unfortunately, go hand in hand in areas of the midwest like ours here in Kansas City. We have hot humid summers and freezing temperatures that make our attics and black mold the best of friends.

Differences of Opinion Regarding Attics and Black Mold

There are many opinions about mold, its toxicity and how to remove it. The common response of general contractors is to simply rip it out, that it is not a problem. Then you have the other extreme of mold professionals that use fear tactics to make their point. At FreshStart, we desire to obtain a middle ground position whenever we can. We follow and recommend the guidelines issued by the EPA due to their endless hours and resources to properly study the effects of mold exposure and precautions to use during remediation. Mold is toxic and it should not be breathed! With recent studies by many medical institutions and professionals are legitimizing this claim and realizing there are many chronic illnesses and ailments that are being connected to mold.

Attic and Mold Inspections during Home Purchases

We have worked with many new homebuyers who purchased their property without knowing that there was a mold problem in the attic. Many times inspectors do not thoroughly inspect the attic or they are not trained or experienced to recognize mold damage when they see it. Attics can produce the perfect environment for mold to thrive. Mold needs moisture and humidity, warm temperatures, darkness and food (organic materials) to thrive. Most of the attics we have seen in our area do not have the adequate amount of insulation as recommended by Energy Star. Thus causing heat to escape from the home during winter months and extreme heat conditions during the summer months. In addition, proper insulation requires careful attention being made to ensure that vents are not blocked and that there is an adequate number of vents to provide the proper airflow needed in the attic. An insufficient amount of insulation can also lead to problems with ice dams, which are the most common cause of roof leaks in the winter.

This is why we recommend that when you are purchasing your home or looking to make efficiency improvements to speak with one of our mold professionals. If you are in the midst of purchasing a new home, we can provide a detailed mold inspection and look for things that your home inspector may be missing.

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