How important is it to test for mold before buying a home?

Spring is traditionally a busy time for the real estate industry, as more people begin putting their homes on the market and expressing interest in purchasing property. If you're thinking of checking out some houses this season, it's important to be aware of what you need to do before making an offer or signing any paperwork. No matter how nice a home appears, it is in your best interest to get a home inspection to determine if there are any issues that may cost you money or even affect your health in the long run. Professional home inspection contractors can also determine whether a property shows signs of mold, and help you with the following: 

Determining the source – Mold needs moisture in order to survive. In most cases, the fungus appears after a leak has allowed water into a home. It's commonly found in areas like the kitchen, bathroom and basement where liquid flows frequently and water can seep in through cracks in the foundation. It's important to resolve these problems so mold can't continue to thrive. 

Finding where it is hidden – In some cases, a seller will try to hide traces of mold by painting over it. This makes it invisible to the untrained eye, but professionals have equipment that tests the air to measure mold levels. 

Removing it – Getting rid of mold once it's there is challenging. Sometimes it even requires removing entire walls. This is another reason why it's important to work with a home inspection contractor, since they can help you figure out if and how to combat the fungus. 

If a mold problem is particularly severe, you may want to reconsider buying the property. After all, you don't want to move into a new house that could end up making you sick or costing significant amounts of money in repairs.