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Old 01-26-2007, 03:37 AM
 
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I'm just curious. Are there lots of homes w/ mold problems? Can you get home insurance for mold (at a reasonable price)?

Just curious.
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Old 01-26-2007, 06:35 AM
 
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The answer to your question about mold is yes - mold is more prevelant in Florida houses. But, mold is not nearly the big deal that some people make it out to be. Unless you have an alergy to it, it may not even effect you. Also, you won't get mold if you run your A/C normaly and/or have a dehumidifier in your home. You can buy a dehumidifier at home depot for about $150, and they are much cheaper to run than your A/C if your goal is to keep humidity in check. Many new air conditioners have built in dehumidifiers.

Anyway, if you find some little black spots growing on your bathroom ceiling, just get a paper towel with a little bleach on it and wipe it off. I really think the "Black Mold" scare was just a bunch of hype by companies that make huge money off of removing mold from homes with water damage. This "expert" mold removal amounts to some guy removing some drywall and spraying bleach behind the walls.
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Old 01-26-2007, 07:00 AM
 
Location: Tampa Bay
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Mold is a problem here for sure. Mostly just the typical stuff you get in your bathroom which isn't a big deal, but the black mold is a danger. If you have a roof leak or pipe leak that is small and you don't notice there is a problem right away can cause a big problem with this mold. When this mold gets in the walls, it actually grows thru the drywall and then is noticed when it shows itself on the outside (you see mold coming thru on your wall). Some molds are not much more than a nusance, but a particular strain of black mold has toxins that make you sick. It can make you very very sick! If it is in your wall and grows into the framing and not just the drywall, it can be expensive to remedy (replacing wood members as well as all the drywall). Some homes have been so bad, they are unliveable, but those are generally from really neglected major roof leaks or after fires. Also if there is the possibility of this mold reoccurring so a house with alot of this mold is put on a "mold list" and will have to be certified as clean to get the ok for occupancy again.

Best thing is to watch out for signs of mold when searching for a home to buy/rent and stay away from those... and keeping any leaks or mold under control immediately in your home so it doesn't get a foothold.

I don't know of any insurance for this that I'm aware of.

here's a link:
http://moldtestkit.com/blackmold.html
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Old 01-26-2007, 07:29 AM
 
Location: Ocala area in Central FL
627 posts, read 2,556,358 times
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You will find mold in each and every state; It dose not discriminate. I have seen it in attics, basements, wood framing, on sheetrock (in wet/damp sheetrock), siding carpeting, Lino and so on...

I agree, take precautions, so you can reduce the risk.

I was just discussing this with my husband, two days ago, we noticed that a builder bought up three house frames… these homes had exposed rafters for over a year and had become black and grey (weather and growth). The new builder did not remove or treat the rafters, they simply built right on over them… we were shocked, but not surprised. Three families will now have new homes (if they ever sell, they have been on the market for over a year since listed) with a good probability of mold growth in those hot / humid / dark attics. Now here is potential for severe health concerns.

Have a GREAT Day!!
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Old 01-26-2007, 07:49 AM
 
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My hubby is an architect/project manager with Hillsborough County. They have acutually had to knock down and rebuild large buildings because of mold. Florida is VERY BAD, worse than other states, believe me, because of all the moisture, heat and humidity. The trick is to keep your house dry, and make sure you don't have roof or plumbing leaks. This is why water damage is so bad like after a hurricane or storm. If the home doesn't get completely dried out, you will have a serious mold problem. A little prevention goes a long way.
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Old 01-26-2007, 08:09 AM
 
Location: Central FL
1,683 posts, read 7,392,453 times
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All states have mold issues. My parents in South Carolina has issues when they built a huge addition to their home and the plumber didn't connect one of the pipes from the master bathroom sink to the sewer system. After a couple of years, they noticed a smell, called someone to investigate and found that the sink was draining into the dirt underneath the house!!! They had a major cleanup from that one.

Although I hate all the hoops some of the permitting/building process makes you go through here in Florida -it's worth it to save that kind of issues. I know some people in upstate SC that just had to walk away from their half built house because it was structurally unsound and they had already given the builder most of their money - they had no money left to tear it down and start over! This should never have happened had they had good building inspectors, etc. We got to know the builing inspector who inspected our home in Orlando and later inspected our pool. He was a stickler - he made sure everything was just right. I know he drove the builder crazy - they even had to tear out the whole front door area and rebuild it. He made the company that poured our footers for the paver deck come back 3 times until they got it right. It was a pain, but I appreciated it.

I watch alot of home improvement TV and I have seen mold issues all over the country. One of the Extreme Home Makeover shows that airs on Sunday nights on ABC built a new home for a family in the northeast (I think it was PA) because the dad had DIED from mold issues while trying to remodel their old home. Another Holmes on Homes show shot in Canada was dedicated exclusively to water and mold issues.

Our home inspector told us that newer homes are sometimes more suseptible to mold issues than older ones because they are built so tightly - that the walls can 'sweat' inside and the humidity has nowhere to escape. So we are constantly on the lookout for the least sign of mold.

While Florida may be more naturally suseptible to mold than some places due to it climate - we really don't have any more problems with it than most places and in fact less problems than some these days because almost everyone now has air conditioning in Florida and they run it a large part of the year. The air conditioner also dehumidifies the air and helps control moisture problems. Places where the climate is cooler and they don't run air conditioners or dehumidifiers can really have mold issues. Think basements...
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Old 01-26-2007, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Miami
6,853 posts, read 18,992,106 times
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We don't have the mold problem in the walls of the houses. But we do get it in the showers, but a little clorox each week gets rid of it. We do get it on our front porch and pool patio when the rain sits. So when it gets to much I just get out there with clorox and a scrub brush too.
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Old 01-26-2007, 09:11 AM
 
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Exactly, doggiebuss! Unless you have a house that had extensive roof leaks or other type of heavy water intrusion, you don't need to get too overly concerned about mold. During the hurricanes many houses lost substantial portions of roofing and, due to the long wait for repairs, there was substantial water damage, and thus mold. These houses do need to be checked to make sure that mold remediation was properly performed.

There is a test that can be conducted for black mold, but it needs to be sent off to a lab - takes about one to two weeks to get the results. But, before you do that, just use your nose, eyes - if a house has a moisture problem you will be able to smell it and feel it.
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Old 01-26-2007, 11:18 AM
 
Location: Tampa Bay
598 posts, read 1,969,712 times
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It really doesn't have to be something extensive. It can be something as simple as your A/C drainage pipe being loose/cracked (for those with A/C unit in the attic) and the constant drip into the attic or inside the wall where the line runs. Or a problem with your bathtub caulking or water getting in the wall around the faucet/diverter. Things you don't know are happening. This type of thing can go on for a very long time and not be noticed until you remodel your bathroom and discover a monster has been living there!
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Old 01-26-2007, 11:38 AM
 
1,418 posts, read 9,092,469 times
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Quote:
This type of thing can go on for a very long time and not be noticed until you remodel your bathroom
If it's not noticed, it's not that big of a deal either. Sure you might find some mold, dirt, nastiness, etc when tearing out a bathroom, but it's localized, hasn't hurt or killed anyone, so it's not the huge problem that the mold re-hab companies like to make everyone think. The big problem is with people who have rooves that have leaked for a long time, or had extensive water damage during one of the hurricanes, and couldn't immediatly get the water out because the electricity was off for 3-5 weeks. In those cases, if the house wasn't rebuilt right, you could an have extensive and dangerous mold problem.

Just my two cents on mold, for what it's worth.
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