Avoid Mold Scams

Unfortunately, there are some in our service industries that wish to exploit the public. Often, these exploitations are based on the fears of the general public in regard to mold and other indoor contaminants.

We invite you to educate yourself on scams in our industries so that you can avoid getting pointed in the wrong direction or paying too much for services.

Common mold inspection scams:

  • Visual-Only Mold Inspection: This is one of the most common scams in the industry. Companies or individuals that claim they can determine whether there is a mold problem in a home simply by looking at it. While the visual inspection is a part of the whole inspection, it is only a part. Every mold inspection should be accompanied by testing to scientifically determine whether mold is present and the concentrations that are present. A visual-only will not accurately prove whether or not you have a problem.
  • Free Mold Inspection: Often, companies will advertise free mold inspections to the public. Then when they arrive at your property, they charge huge fees to have testing performed on a per sample basis. You should not be deceived into thinking the inspection is free. Make sure to understand the full cost of the inspection before scheduling.
  • Small-Time/One-Man Operation: Smaller operations are a concern in the industry because they often are inexperienced and uncertified operations that have no resources to truly support the clients they are serving. Often they are unlicensed as a business, too. Customer service is non-existent. Those encountering these operations are often left with no outcome when the person takes their money and runs.
  • Uncertified Inspector: This one is hard to detect. Many companies or individuals will operate without any background or certification in mold inspection or mold remediation. Check for certifications before using a company.

Common mold remediation scams:

  • Demolition-Only: This is one of the most common scams related to mold remediation. Individuals or companies claim that the mold remediation process is nothing special and that they can come in and cheaply remove the mold. The result can be devastating for the property and occupants. Remediation that isn’t performed by a certified technician in a contained environment can lead to a return of mold growth and cross-contamination. The growth returns because proper decontamination isn’t performed. Cross-contamination is where spores spread into the air, further polluting the environment, or to other areas of the property where mold growth begins in new areas.
  • Smoke-and-Mirrors: This is where companies come in, setup a bunch of equipment, possibly even a containment, but don’t actually do any work on removing the mold. Instead, they just purify the air and leave. This scam is less common, but it has been known to happen.
  • No Guarantee: While there is no absolute way to be sure that an environment is 100% free of mold and mold spores, reputable companies will do as thorough a job as possible to remove harmful mold from your property, purify your air, and take steps to prevent the return of mold growth. Companies that don’t offer any kind of guarantee for their work aren’t standing by their work and probably won’t do a thorough job.
  • Small Operations: One-man or small operations are risky with mold remediation. They rely on fewer jobs to pay the bills so you are often issued an inflated contract that can be 5-10+ thousand dollars, depending on the size of the property and work needed. Another problem with these businesses is they are often inexperienced and unlicensed since they are so knew. Also, if there are any problems with the work performed, it can extremely difficult to get through to their often non-existent customer service and you can forget about any kind of legal remedy for problems that could arise.
  • Illegal Immigrant Workers: It is common for the construction industry to use illegal immigrants for laborious work. However, mold remediation requires special skills learned through extensive training. Only a well-trained, experienced and certified technician should be working on your property. Otherwise, the outcome could be an incomplete project, cross-contamination and a return of mold growth in the future.

If you would like more information on these scams, how to protect yourself, or to learn about how you can have a “fool-proof” experience with Area Environmental, call us at 1-866-657-3161.