Buying a house with mold-what to do?

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The house that we are going to buy was inspected and a mold of black color was found in the attic. It grows on several, but not all, beams that support the roof, however those with the mold are infected heavily.
The house was built in 1988 and, apart from this mold thing, the inspection did not find anything serious. According to the contract, sellers must do the cleanup if it is $750 or less, however I don't think they can do it for that cheap here (Central Virginia).
After search in this newsgroup, I realized that this mold could be a serious problem. So I don't know what should I do. Should I look for another house or get the seller clean it up no matter what?
TIA,
Andrei
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Andrei wrote:

I don't think black mold is as bad a problem as hysterical people like to believe. It is serious, but if it's growing on an exposed surface like that you can kill it easily by spraying with a fungicide suitable for indoor use. If it's inside the walls, it's a little harder to deal with.
But mold indicates a moisture problem. That's what I would be concerned about. Does the roof leak? Or maybe it's not vented properly?
Best regards, Bob
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Andrei wrote:

Molds of all kinds *can* be serious to some people. You won't know the true extent of the problem or whether you (and maybe your children) are susceptible until you have lived there for maybe a year.
Will you get an iron-clad guarantee from the seller that any cleanup will be 100% effective and that they will take back the house if you find it is a problem? Will the realtor offer to buy it back? No, I didn't think so.
I'm currently dealing with a problem house; it is not fun. Look for another.
Jim
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Speedy Jim wrote:

Cleaning may be easy but the cause of mold could be still there. I'd just pass it up for another house. Tony
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I would say pass on the house unless it is the only one around and then insist the MOLD be mitigated and the reason for it be repaired before you buy the house! Wayne

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On 16 Dec 2003 17:53:05 -0800, andrei snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Andrei) wrote:

I'd pass up this house. Roof damage can be expensive to repair. Plus, cleaning up the mold does not fix the moisture problem, either. You were wise to have it inspected.
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If you have children...........pass If you have any respiratory issues.........pass If your symptomatic to allergens........pass
If you can get in writing that this problem will be fixed and the moisture problem will be located and repaired before the p and s.....think about it
If it were me, it would be part of the negotiations, and they would have to make it worth my while. But if I were you I would pass.......you'll find another, better house.
Dave

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Andrei wrote:

worry about it.... my homeowners insurance sent out a notice on renewal that they dont cover mold in houses any longer.... that way you dont have to worry about it coming back as most mold will come back....
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Uh, but do you REALLY want to buy a moldy house. I mean do you REALLY???? I inherited a house with black mold, but fortunately, it was in the basement and on concrete/painted surfaces that were easily remedied, and really chewed into drywall and 2x4s that weren't structural in nature at all -- so it all got ripped out. There are people who have had to have their entire house torn down because of black mold permeating structural wood.
Once mold gets into wood, it lives there forever until you remove the wood completely. If you have the money and the means to remove your entire roof, then fine, go with it. Otherwise, pass pass pass on that loser.
Black mold can fuck you up big time. Period.
AJS
andrei snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Andrei) wrote:

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I would not consider it, unless the contract allowed me to hire the mold and roof correction crews and that the sale was on hold until I get the reports/estimates back from both and I could decide to accept or reject the sale at that time.
Until you have real estimates you are buying something blind. The largest investment you are ever likely to make and you have no way of knowing what is going on, other than there is some sort of mold problem.
Yes you have two problems, one mold and one the reason for the mold.
--
Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
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andrei snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Andrei) wrote:

Contrary to the group wisdom, I say -- don't worry about the mold per se, but be concerned about the quality of the roof -- it's a good indication of moisture problems.
The roof is 22 years old. 1988 is well into the staplegun era of home construction, so it may well have been built near the minimum acceptable standards of materials and methods specified at the time. . . . . probably time to replace the roof, that's all. Might not hurt to improve the whole roof-gutter-flashing etc. system, improve the venting, r/r attic insulation --- no time like when you buy!
My personal opinion on mold is that, in general (with allowances for the VERY FEW idiopathically susceptible individuals) the frothing panic people get into over mold is vastly overblown, and symptomatic of a risk averse society incabable of rationally assessing risk.
Buy your house and make it nicer than it is today.
.max
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plus 22 yrs. than makes it 2010 now, boy time sure does go by quick....
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cough. in my defense, i am a moron.
.max
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It was modular house. The roof was built in 1981. <G>
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Mold on rafters indicates a leaking roof or condensation forming in winter due to improper ventilation, Either or both may be happening. Mold can be killed by spraying with bleach. It has to be fixed first, is it worth the headache. If yes future testing and work has to be figured in
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Spraying with bleach only kills surface mold. If left unchecked for a long time, mold's like termites and nail fungus -- it just keeps burrowing deeper and deeper. You might kill the surface stuff, but if it ate deep into the wood, it'll resurface several weeks or months after you've kill the surface stuff. Topical solution is rarely the solution for the heavy stuff.
AJS
snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (m Ransley) wrote:

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I agree with this. How long a roof last? 20, 25 years ? Probably the previous owner didnt take care of the house well.
Sam
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I don't get into a panic about mold, but I do know it's not a good thing. I also know that once it gets into wood, it's there for good, and the only way to eliminate the mold for good is to eliminate the moldy wood. If you think buying a house that possibly needs the whole roof structure replaced at a cost of several grand and several weeks of major inconvenience is a good idea, that's fine. Most people wouldn't.
AJS

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AJScott wrote:

I dunno.. A tesla coil would probably do the trick. I wouldn't want to be in the house while it was running, though.
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On 16 Dec 2003 17:53:05 -0800, andrei snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com (Andrei) wrote:

Like others have said the whole MOLD issue is overblown.
We bought a house two years ago and found mold in the attic and on the joists in the basement.
We couldn't prove that the previous owners knew of the mold so we had no recourse. Consider yourself lucky the home inspector you got looked for mold. We used a Homecheck inspector and the guy didn't look for any mold. They even have in their disclaimer a statement saying that they do not look for molds, mildew, etc....
We are in the process of cleaning the mold. We will replace the roof and add more soffit vents and add a ridge vent for increased air circulation.
We are more concerned about the structural damage the mold caused that the health concerns. We didn't find the so called killer black mold "Stachybotrys" Other molds are black too.
If I would have known about the mold I would have run away from this house!
Regardless of how dangerous you think MOLD is it will kill the resale value of the house if/when you try to resale. Once you have the problem you are required to disclose it.
Again, move on and fins another house and consider yourself lucky you didn't close yet!
Joe E.
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