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5 Reasons Why You Need a Home Mold Inspection: An Interview with Michael Bazzo of Great Lakes Home & Property Inspections

Tell us a little bit about your experience, company history and the services you offer.

I was in the construction trades for 23 years prior to establishing Great Lakes Home & Property Inspections. This included everything from demolition to constructing new residential and commercial buildings. In 2002, I was looking for a new direction to go in, since all the years of abusing my body was taking its toll. I was talking with an associate one day, who asked me about doing home inspections. Although I wasn't aware of it at the time, it turned out to be the beginning of Great Lakes Home & Property Inspections. Since our inception into the building inspection profession, we have grown into a full service company, providing clients with services such as commercial/industrial building inspections, residential home inspections, radon testing and mold assessments and testing. We also specialize in manufactured homes and log home construction. I am also one of the few certified master inspectors in southeast Michigan.

What are the best and worst case scenarios when there is mold growth in a home and it goes undetected (and untreated)?

Every individual tolerates elevated levels of mold spores in the home differently. As a best case scenario, it would have to be examples of homes inspected for real estate transactions and suspected hidden mold was found. Through air sampling, mold growth was confirmed and laboratory analysis determined spores were at elevated levels. The sellers lived in the home for 10 years and never experienced any symptoms of mold exposure. I have also worked with clients that went from having 100% oxygen absorption in their lungs, reduced to 60% in six months due to living in a home with black mold, hidden in wall cavities from chimney leaks to went undetected.

What are the most common causes of mold and affected areas?

Like all living things, mold needs food and, especially water to live Take away the water source and mold stops growing. Many homeowners do not realize that a single mold spore can go from a spore to full grown, spore producing plant in as little as 48 to72 hour, depending on the surrounding environment. This simple mold fact affects millions of homeowners a year without even knowing it. As an example, most people will clean their carpets with a rug doctor carpet cleaner. If the directions are followed that comes with the equipment, there is no issue, the problem lies in how much water is allowed to saturate the carpet and padding. Most homeowners use excessive water that takes days to evaporate. This is a perfect breeding ground for mold growth between the carpet and padding. The best practice is simple, use as little water as needed to clean and if there is a roof or plumbing leak in your home, dry it up as quickly as possible and remove west material from your home as soon as possible.

When should a homeowner or homebuyer get a mold inspection?

There are many reasons a homeowner should get a mold inspection. This includes but is not limited to flooding with extended periods of water exposure, growths on walls, ceilings or personal belongs or if the homeowner has noticed ongoing respiratory ailments are the most common indications that a mold problem may be present.

What advice would you give to someone who thinks they might have a mold problem but has a limited budget?

There are many companies claiming they can do mold inspections or mold testing on a budget, the problem is they cannot begin to interpret the laboratory results. Without this information, they homeowner is getting little information and spent hard earned money for nothing. The best first step is contacting a mold professional who is certified by the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA). This is the certifying board for industrial hygienists and testing laboratories. Great Lakes Home & Property Inspections has been certified by an AIHA accredited educator and has helped business owners and homeowners resolve their mold problems since 2002.

What's the best way for people to reach you and your company?

We look forward to earning the trust of all of our clients, whether it's a residential or commercial building inspection, or mold or radon testing. We would be happy to answer your call7 days a week, 8 AM until 10:00 PM, by calling 586-855-7644 or email me at mbazzo@greatlakesinspections.com.

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