Licensed Mold Assessors

NYS Licensed Mold Assessors: What You Should Know

You may have already heard the buzz, as of January 1st, 2016; there are new rules in New York State on Mold Assessment and Remediation. Here are the top three things you should know about the changes.

  1. The mere presence of mold growth or evidence of water damage in the home is not to be disregarded. These are both issues that need to be addressed immediately in order to protect those dwelling in the home from possible harmful mold exposure.
  2. When hiring someone in New York State to investigate mold growth or water damage, you must use an NYS Licensed Mold Assessor. This company will assess the extent of the mold growth or moisture issue and develop a remediation work plan if the specified requirements are met.
  3. When hiring someone in New York State to remediate mold growth or water damage, it cannot be the same company that assessed your mold. The new contractor must follow the remediation work plan, remove and or clean any area that is outlined in the plan.

Your mold assessor may use a variety of invasive and non-invasive inspection techniques. These include moisture surveys, a sampling of air/surfaces, thermal imaging surveys and visual inspection. Once they have sufficiently evaluated the area of concern they make recommendations to the homeowner.

The homeowner must then hire an NYS licensed remediation contractor to carry out the removal and abide by the NYS mold remediation regulations, policies and procedures set out in the New York State Mold Bill. This person cannot be the same person who assessed the mold or water damage.

If you are dealing with moisture issues or mold presence in your home and are a Rockland County or Westchester County resident, let the professionals here at HNST Mold Inspections help guide you through the process by calling (845) 215-9258. Our NYSDOL Mold Assessor License is #00057.

New York NYS Licensed Mold Assessor

Preventing Conflict of Interest

Did you know that the NYS Mold Bill enacted January 1, 2016, helps to prevent conflict of interest? That’s right, the new requirements put into place allow one single company to possess licenses in both assessment and remediation, yet restrict them to perform both services to the same property.  Read more

NYS Mold Bill

NYS Mold Bill

If you’ve read our previous blogs regarding the New York State (NYS) Mold Bill such as Breaking Down The Mold Program and Compliance with the Mold Program, you’re probably familiar with what the bill does, but perhaps you are wondering why it was enacted.

Due to the extensive effects from the moisture and flooding that happened with 2012’s Hurricane Sandy, many people were left in desperate need of help to restore their homes. Unfortunately, some contractors took advantage of those in need and work was performed by untrained professionals putting people at risk of being exposed to Mold.

The Bill’s Preamble does a perfect job of explaining the need for the NYS Mold Bill so we will not attempt to paraphrase.

Several months after Hurricane Sandy ravaged parts of New York with massive flooding, there is an increasing public health risk associated with mold growth in residential and commercial buildings. Mold exposure causes respiratory health problems and people, (especially children), with asthma are particularly vulnerable to illnesses from mold exposure. Mold can also sometimes cause even more serious health problems. Many people do not fully understand mold problems, the causes of mold in buildings, and the proper assessment and/or remediation when a mold problem exists. As a result, it is in the interest of the public safety and welfare to prevent future damage to real and personal property, minimize the public health risks posed by mold in public and private buildings, and avert economic injury to NYS residents by regulating persons and companies that hold themselves out to the public as qualified to perform mold-related services. This bill will ensure that the public is protected from unscrupulous contractors offering mold assessment and/or remediation and that licensed persons and/or businesses engaged in mold assessment and/or remediation will be properly trained.”

Whether you are a business owner, property manager, homeowner or renter, you should know what the NYS Mold Bill says when it comes to finding or suspecting mold in your home or property. Be sure that you ask to see the companies NYSDOL Mold Assessor License, if they do not show it to you, beware!

Head over to my page on the NYS Mold Bill for more information and to see my license.

PHOTO ABOVE:
STATEN ISLAND, NY – OCTOBER 30: Completely flooded basement next day after Hurricane Sandy on October 30, 2012 in Staten Island. There is a visible line showing maximum water level higher than 7 feet

 

NYDOL Certificate

Breaking Down the Mold Program

The 2016 Mold Program is responsible for enforcing Article 32 of the New York State Labor Law. Basically, the program establishes licensing requirements and minimum standards for mold assessment and remediation throughout the state. These types of programs can be hard to understand to the average eye, so the professionals here at HNST Mold Inspections are hoping to simplify the process by breaking it down for you.

Read more

Test your mold knowledge

Test your mold knowledge

You already know how important it is to protect and inspect your home from moisture and mold, but do you know where to look? Test your knowledge by utilizing the EPA’s Interactive Mold House Tour. The tour lets you get a look room-by-room into a home so that you can explore some of the most common mold issues and problem areas.

Put your knowledge to the test and see if you can identify all of the areas of your home that could be vulnerable to mold growth. Can you Identify all 13 problem areas? The Interactive Tour requires JavaScript in order to function. A text version of the Mold House Tour is also available.

Once you’ve completed the tour continue reading below.

Hopefully you’ve Identified all 13 problem areas, and if you missed a few, that’s OK! Now its time to put what you’ve learned to work. Go perform your own home mold tour checking the living room, bathroom, roof, kitchen, basement, laundry room, front door and drain pipe in the yard.

If you identify any moisture issues, signs of mold or areas of susceptibility, then it is time to take action. Call in a licensed mold inspector who will do a more thorough and in depth check of your home. Choose a company that is trusted and reliable such as HNST Mold Inspections which won the Angie’s List Super Service Award for many years in a row.

mold check

Easy 4 step mold check

Mold can be hiding anywhere! Here is our easy 4 step check for you to perform on your home before winter.

Step 1:

Perform a visible mold search in your home. If you have NO idea what mold looks like, please see our previous posts or google image search so that you know what you’re looking for. Check for anything furry or colorful growth on items in areas that are exposed to moisture. Specifically, investigate the bathroom, basement, attic and kitchen.

Step 2:

Engage your other senses! Do you smell mildew or a moldy smell in a certain area of your home? If it is evident upon opening the door to your basement, attic or bathroom that there is a mildew or mold smell, chances are there is.

Step 3:

Have you experienced basement flooding, recurring roof leaks or other moisture issues in your home? This is a question you’ll have to ask yourself and your family. If you have, those areas are prone to mold growth and you should have those areas investigated further.

Step 4:

Perform an at home mold test. These tests can help to identify a possible mold issue if your first three steps have given you caused to proceed further.

Performing this easy 4 step check for mold in your home can help you to identify a potential mold problem and health hazard. If any of the four steps give you cause for concern, then you should call in a Certified Mold Inspector. With proper experience and knowledge, inspectors can help to locate the mold, the cause of the mold and direct you on how to abate the problem.

As a certified Mold Inspector, HNST Mold Inspections has helped many throughout New York and New Jersey identify mold issues and assess them. Call us today at (845) 215-9258 (NY) or (201) 733-0091 (NJ) if you have any questions or need our assistance after performing your 4 step check!

Moisture causing mold in house

Mold, Moisture and your home

With the variety of issues facing the environment in 2016 from air pollution to mold many feel as though there is nothing they can do that matters enough. We can clean up all of the messes after they’ve happened, but more importantly it’s what we do to prevent them that create an impact.  Mold and Moisture continue to be one of the leading issues faced in the environment, and the key to changing this problem is prevention.

The EPA has released a guide for homeowners and renters alike which provides information on how to clean up residential mold and how to prevent mold growth. This 20 page guide is easy to read, provides pictures to refer to and provides additional resources for those who wish to learn more.  If you are a homeowner, property owner or renter, we suggest you download and read the guide here: A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home.

Prevention truly is important when dealing with mold and the more information that you know, the better!  Our blog includes past articles such as Preventing Mold in Your Attic and Controlling Mold in your Bathroom which are two areas very susceptible to mold issues.

Like all issues facing the environment, we know that taking steps to prevent them is what matters. If you do your part to prevent mold growth, you are part of the movement to help reduce the number of people affected with health related issues due to mold and decrease mold problems in homes. Get ahead of the issue now by reading the guide as well as our blog posts and then get to work!

Mold in Home

Black Mold and Insurance Claims

If you’ve ever encountered a major problem in your home, one of the first questions you’ve probably asked yourself is “does my homeowners insurance cover this?”  With Black Mold, the question is even more important for you to understand a head of time. Not only does black mold cause damage and unsightly messes in the home, but it also poses health problems. Costs can get out of control when it comes to abatement, and with inadequate or no coverage, you could be on the hook. Here is what you need to know regarding black mold and insurance claims.

  1. As black mold becomes an increasingly common problem, it’s important that any time you take on new homeowners insurance, or switch companies that you specifically ask about coverage for mold related issues.
  2. Although black mold may be covered due to the event that caused it, many insurance companies set limits or exclusions in their policies. It is important to ask your agent about any limits or exclusions set forth in the policy.
  3. If you do not have flood insurance, mold caused due to a flood may not be covered. Again, important to read and understand your policy. You may want to have flood insurance depending on your area.
  4. Mold issues due to neglected maintenance on your home may not be covered! Mold caused by leaks, seepage or poor drainage will most likely not be covered which means you need to do your due diligence and make sure those problems aren’t happening on your property.

The bottom line is that you need to know what your insurance covers and what it doesn’t. You’re your insurance company today! Ask them what mold related coverage you have, what the limits are, and what any exclusions would be. You may need to add coverage such as flood insurance in order to be completely covered. Also, review our top ten list for what you can be doing to prevent mold in your home and protect yourself now!

Immune System

Exposing young Children to bacteria

In today’s world of antibiotic use, hand sanitizing and anti-bacterial soap, is it any wonder that allergies are at an all-time high, and that children’s immune systems aren’t as strong as they used to be? We came across this great video that we’d like to share with you regarding allergies.

Mold allergies, asthma and other respiratory concerns are a big consequence of mold growing in homes. Children with low immunity can have a stronger and more impacted response tom mold and allergens inside the home. Because children are our future, and we want to see them thrive with a strong immunity, we’d like to highlight this video posted by David Wolfe, on his Facebook page we hope you enjoy it.

You can view the video here.

With over 7.6 Million views, we know that this short video will make some sort of impact on you. Even if you just learn something new in regards to auto-immune disease, immune systems, or overuse of antibiotics you will walk away a more informed individual.

Allergies to mold can look just like any other allergy symptom. That is why it’s so important to really do some investigation into your home, look for areas of moisture, and get your home inspected if you suspect mold is the culprit. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook for more!