Mold disclosure for bank owned property - standard practice or not?

Asked by Alexu, Seattle, WA Thu Oct 23, 2008

I am trying to buy a foreclosed property owned by the bank. Just received a counter offer from the bank that had "Mold disclosure and release" addendum. It says "property may have mold". My agent says its a standard practice, but I am worried.

Is it really a standard bank's practice to include mold disclosure?
What kind of special instructions should I give to home inspector so he checks for possible mold issue?
At what point should I back from the deal or order professional mold inspection?

Thank you

Alexander

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Mark Despain, Agent, Seattle, WA
Fri Oct 24, 2008
BEST ANSWER
I have used Rod Beacham with Fidelity Inspections for over five years and I highly recommend him, 206-467-7328. He is smart, thorough and honest and is certified as for pests and air quality testing.
Web Reference:  http://www.homehounds.com
0 votes
Alexu, Home Buyer, Seattle, WA
Fri Oct 24, 2008
Thanks all for fast response.

I did not see any water damage during the tour, windows looked clean and there was no smell.

Can you recommend an inspector in Seattle area that will "leave no stone unturned" and "certified for pest inspections and air quality testing" as Steve McDonald and Mark Despain suggested?
0 votes
Mark Despain, Agent, Seattle, WA
Fri Oct 24, 2008
I agree with Mr. McDonald. Get a qualified inspector that is certified for pest inspections and air quality testing. There are lots of types of mold and most old houses in this climate have some mold somewhere. Just because a basement smells a little "musty" is no reason to assume that there is life threatening mold. If your inspector has any doubts he should recommend taking an air sample to have analyzed.
Web Reference:  http://www.homehounds.com
0 votes
Steve McDona…, Agent, Seattle, WA
Thu Oct 23, 2008
Alexu,
Your agent is correct. Banks don't want to leave themselves open to any law suit. Since they are excused from filing a Form 17, they can't rely on your inspection process or disclosures your agent inserts into the contracts. The document doesn't mean that there is mold, it just wants you to be aware of the possibility in case it presents a health issue now or later. Buying foreclosure properties are not for the faint hearted. Be thorough in your inspection process and leave no stone unturned. It's the only way you'll have piece of mind.
Steve
0 votes
James Hsu, Agent, Bothell, WA
Thu Oct 23, 2008
Bank could be just including every possible disclosure just to cover it's butt. Kinda of a do it all to account for any issues.

Keep in mind, ..not all inspectors are trained to be a mold inspector. There is no "standard" practice for banks to my knowledge...the only standard practice is to make sure they're covered. If you see or if your inspector sees signs of mold ... and the house is really a good deal.... might not be a bad idea to get a full mold inspection (destructive..if bank allows) to really see what you're getting into. If there are no signs of mold... it's your call. Mold comes from moisture intrusion or bad circulation. Is the house conducive to those issues? old windows, musty smell, etc.

good luck
0 votes
Scott Godzyk, Agent, Manchester, NH
Thu Oct 23, 2008
it is not standard with all banks, it may differ from state to state. as wih any bank owned home you should do your insoections prior to bidding, with mold you should be able to smell it as soon as you walk in, check the wet areas and basement for it. good luck
Web Reference:  http://www.ScottSellsNH.com
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