ABC News recently did a story offering tips on how to protect yourself during a mold inspection. That story can be seen HERE. As a leader in the mold inspection field, we felt it necessary that MI&T respond to this story and give our two cents about everything. We feel that ABC did a good job of exposing some of the problems in the mold field, but their “tips” could have been a bit better.
If you have yet to see the video, it is basically a sting operation on “inspectors” that were called into a house by a customer who is concerned they might have a mold problem. 7 mold inspectors were called in to complete an inspection and the report focuses on the variety of conclusions. 4 out of the 7 did not fall for the trap and gave an honest assessment with no mold problem. The 3 that did all followed up with a quote on how much it would be to fix the problem.
According to ABC news, the “Four tips to protect yourself during a mold inspection,” are as follows:
- Do Your Research
- Slower Is Better
- Tests Do Not Hold All The Answers
- Don’t Think Extreme
We applaud ABC for trying to help consumers stay safe from scams and fraud. However, they completely missed the boat in this consumer report. What they should have focused on is that each of the “inspectors” that reported a problem was present then attempted to pitch a mold removal job after their inspection was complete. The #1 tip should have been you should use a company that operates without a conflict of interest. The inspection and testing should be unbiased so the customer does not have to worry about the possibility of dishonest services.
Some states like Florida and Texas have started to regulate the mold industry and implement a licensing program and laws prohibiting companies from handling both aspects of a restoration project. In 2011 an Orlando business owner was arrested and charged with fraud for violating these laws. Here at MI&T, we believe this is precisely the things that need to be put in place in other states. Having regulations in place helps protect consumers and raises standards on who is performing the work.
If you are concerned about indoor mold growth negatively impacting the indoor air quality in your home or business, hiring a certified mold inspector separate from the restoration process is the best thing you can do to stay from scams and fraud.