New Does Not Mean Safe! Buyer Beware!
Buying a new home should give you peace of mind and confidence to think that there should not be anything to worry about…right? Well, unfortunately, this is not always the case. Just because a home is new, does not mean it is mold free!
You have mold in your home because there is excess moisture, required by mold to grow.
Why do brand new homes have excessive moisture?
We have ran into cases of mold found in homes that were less than one year old. In one instance, we were called out to three homes built in the same area and around the same time that mold was discovered in their basements.
Upon inspection, our Project Manager found the mold to be growing on oriented strand board (OSB), wood studs and concrete behind the insulation and vapor barrier.
Why would this be happening?
We asked ourselves the same question and after doing some digging, found the answer.
When these homes were built, Saskatchewan had record rain falls. Nothing had a chance to dry up and humidity was at a record high. We came to the conclusion that if a house was built during this time and if humidity wasn’t controlled before putting insulation and vapor barrier in, chances for mold growth were optimal!
In order to prevent mold growth it is crucial to ensure humidity levels are only 30 to 40% before the insulation and vapor barriers go up. If this is not done, then the moisture and humidity are trapped inside the home, creating a situation ripe for future mold growth.
Once windows have been installed, builders can proceed to efficiently manage humidity levels before proceeding with insulation and vapor barrier installation.
Another contributing factor to mold growth in newer homes is the fact that building construction has changed. A key component of mold growth is food. Mold will not grow without proper food to feed on. In the past, homes were built primarily with plywood and timber which are not as porous, making it harder for mold to get into the surface. Today, new builders use more OSB and particle board. OSB and particle board are more porous and act like a sponge to moisture and allow mold spores to penetrate easily. When condensation forms on OSB it turns to mold very quickly.
Regardless of where you live, before you move into a brand new home, get answers to these questions:
When was the home built?
Was it built during a period of abundant rainfall and high humidity?
Did the builder dry the house properly?
Did the home builder control the humidity before putting in the insulation and installing the vapor barrier?
If you are in the market to purchase a home or have concerns about air quality issues or mold in your home, contact a professional in your area for a mold inspection. We are here to help, so please do not hesitate to contact us. Peace of Mind, just a phone call away! Toll Free: 1-888-909-MOLD (6653)
— #GotMold?™ (@gotmoldglobal) March 27, 2014