Mold can throw a serious wrench into the process of selling your home. However, you have options to avoid liability issues and boost the chances of a sale. Here’s what you need to know, as explained by the best santa monica realtors.
Mold Is a Big Deal
First, an explanation of why mold is a big deal. It brings the potential for serious health complications, especially for babies, young children and senior citizens. Practically no one is going to buy a home with mold when they can get a mold-free home for the same price.
Mold can open sellers up to lawsuits, especially if they knowingly sold a home with mold and did not disclose the fact (or did not properly explain any steps they took to resolve the problem). Even if you sell your home without realizing it had mold, a buyer could come after you later.
Homebuyers do not like mold, period. You may have to reduce your asking price even after eradicating the mold. It’s likely to scare off buyers who were already interested. Some venice beach realtors know this all too well. It can be tricky to get a formerly interested buyer to come back after a mold issue comes to light.
Cleanup Takes Time
Resolving mold takes time, so start early. Examine your home for potential or actual moisture spots, especially in the attic and around water heaters. Likewise, assess any areas that have experienced water damage. If these areas haven’t been repaired yet, take care of that as soon as possible. Thankfully, most homes are just fine.
If you do see mold, especially mold infestations, it’s dangerous to get rid of them yourself. Contact a professional to do the job. Document all of the steps you took, including dates, times, names and photos.
Mold Inspections May Be Necessary (and Keep Documenting!)
A mold inspection helps cover all of your bases. They can be pricey, but they’re more likely than a self-done inspection to uncover a mold problem. Of course, you may not need an inspection if there are no indications of mold and no water damage spots/potential trouble areas.
If inspectors find mold, you can hire a company to do remediation. It kills the mold and prevents re-growth. Hire companies who offer warranties promising that the mold will not return for a certain number of years, or they’ll do another remediation for free. Continue to document all the steps you take, both to protect yourself and to give buyers as much information as possible.
And Then Another Inspection
OK, so your mold is gone and shouldn’t grow back. All good, right? Not yet. To be safe, pay for another inspection so your home can be officially mold-free.
If mold still does exist, it should be in small amounts. These levels may be sufficiently low and not pose health hazards, but an ongoing problem is a red flag. To make a sale happen, you might need to give buyers a monetary credit or a reduced price on the home. If necessary, pay again (at least partially) to have the mold removed.
Always be upfront about any mold issues the house has (or has had). Buyers deserve this information, and it safeguards you in case legal action occurs later.