Mold, should I buy AS IS ??? - Posted by Tim

Posted by MoldisSporatis on July 27, 2007 at 05:42:06:

TIM – Lyal has a good angle on it – if the estimate for “mold remediation” will make the bank come way, far down on the price and the “mold experts” are legit, will produce lab tests before and after, etc. etc. it may be worth it.

We still hold to “never say mold” (this is of course, unless the neighborhood already knows it is molded.)


Mold, should I buy AS IS ??? - Posted by Tim

Posted by Tim on July 26, 2007 at 19:05:11:

We made an offer on a bank owned foreclosure, and got a good counter-offer that we’re itching to accept. This is a $90k ARV SFH that we can buy for $52k. It is in really good shape, but it does have mold in the basement.

There is a water pipe in the basement that was leaking. The owners had sprayed a huge glob of foam insulation, I guess thinking that would stop the leak. It ended up soaking the drywall in the basement (maybe 300 square feet), soaking all of the carpet on the concrete floor, and turned into mold over what must have been months of wetness. Everything’s bone dry now as the property has been vacant for about 6 months.

I’m thinking that we need to remove the drywall and carpet, spray it with bleach, and run fans to make sure everything is good and dry.

There was no mold anywhere except the basement. What steps would we need to take to ensure the house is safe for a renter once we have removed all of the mold in the basement? A friend said that we could possibly solve the problem with fans and wiping everything down.

Any input would be greatly apprecitated.

Re: Mold, should I buy AS IS ??? - Posted by Rich-CA

Posted by Rich-CA on July 27, 2007 at 21:47:06:

Depends on the state. In Colorado there is a procedure for taking care of things like mold.

You will need to find and fix the leak. You will need to remove everything that has mold. You will need to clean and dry out the affected area. Then you can put in new drywall, carpet, etc.

Re: Mold, should I buy AS IS ??? - Posted by MoldisSporatis

Posted by MoldisSporatis on July 27, 2007 at 05:38:28:

If you bring a “mold expert” into the fold they will find mold – no matter what or where – they will find it and tell you it’ll co$t $4,000+ to remove it. Ju$t before they go in, they will have you $ign a waiver $tating they cannot be re$pon$ible for any regrowth, etc…

We are aware of two “mold expert$” that have taken people on thi$. One wound up being on the BBB hit list and wa$ kicked out of the BBB. Did the work but never produced any “lab re$ult$” for the client – ever – before or after a$ agreed. $ince $kipped town. The $econd wa$ a crock – trying to dry out the interior$ with monster dehumidifier$ but the door$ and window$ open. (Maybe that led to the local drought?) $econd “expert” wound up overchargig and ha$ $ince not refunded any of it.

From watching thi$ happen we have learned:

(1) Clorox and lot$ of it.
(2) Never $ay “mold”.
(3) Realize any mold “expert” will find mold. Period. It i$ everywhere. They want your money. Period.
(4) Mold can be like radon ga$ – can’t see it, can’t $mell it, but for $5,000 we can get rid of it (and not be held liable if we didn’t get rid of it.)
(5) There are very rare circum$stances where the mold i$ $o perva$ive you may have to get $pecial attention (like if the entire ba$ement is coated with no doubt thick goo mold or the upper floor$ are coated all over.)
(6) Clorox and lot$ of it.

Bottom line:


There are products less corrosive than clorox (MicroBan, etc.) Some deck washes are made for this. So if your deck has visible mold or mildew (mold), do you have to report it and get a “mold expert” to spray the fluids they bought at the local Lowes or Home Repot?

Mold is everywhere, very few cases where you need to spend your annual income to have it remediated.

Never say mold.

Re: Mold, should I buy AS IS ??? - Posted by Lyal

Posted by Lyal on July 27, 2007 at 05:20:13:

I had a similar situation a couple years back. Mold remediation estimates ran as high as 30K. You need to have this done by a professional company and get their “clean bill of health” statement in writing or you open yourself up to tremendous liability issues when you sell.

I’d get some estimates, take the highest one and try to use it to scare the he!! out of the bank so you can get it cheaper.


Re: Mold, should I buy AS IS ??? - Posted by michaela-CA

Posted by michaela-CA on July 26, 2007 at 20:41:20:

One of the problems you will have, is that you will have to disclose in the future, that the house had mold. So, even if you clean everything up (yes, definitely tear out all the drywall and treat with bleach etc) it may be a longer-term problem, if you’re trying to sell. After you cleaned things up, I would probably hire a professional company, specializing in mold, who can do a reading and make sure that the mold spore level is safe now. THat would help in a sale.

It seems to me though, that you may be paying too much with that potential future problem hanging over your head. But that’s just my opinion.,


Re: Mold, should I buy AS IS ??? - Posted by James

Posted by James on July 27, 2007 at 06:28:18:

I’m just going to start with…I didn’t read all the way through the post. I’m lazy this morning.

I got to the part where you said, 'they will find mold. It’s their job…" or something like that.

I agree. EVERY house has mold.

To the OP, buy the house and bleach it/powerwash basement/kilz do whatever it takes to clean it up well. Dehumidify and build up the exterior foundations for sloping etc.

When you are finished painting, you’ll have a very nice house for a great price and you won’t have to mess with mold experts costing you about 9k. You’ll have a bill of $300 bucks and sweat equity on your hands instead.

Same result…except without the certificate. I wouldn’t tell the new buyers in the future about it unless it’s a valid issue from some other problem that hasn’t been fixed.

My .02 - I live in Michigan where the redemtion period is 6 months and it takes 90 days to get there and another 1-5 months for the bank to list properties. Basic turnaround = 10 mo minimum. This = LOTS of MOLD. :smiley:

Buy the house,