It seems that we hear a lot about environmental concerns these days. Much of it is simply the result of a greater awareness than in the past. And even though there isn't anything to be concerned with in most homes, buyers should still be aware of a number of potential home environmental issues.
Water quality is probably the most common concern and the one most frequently tested. Typically, a basic water quality test will check pH, water hardness, the presence of fluoride, sodium, iron and manganese, plus bacteria such as E-coli. Additionally, water may be tested for the presence of lead or arsenic.
Building Inspection Services offers comprehensive water quality testing which provides peace of mind to occupants of any home with a questionable water supply. This not only includes homes with well systems, but older homes with possible lead leakage from old piping systems. If there is a question of water hardness or the operation of a home water softening system, Building Inspection Services can arrange for a FREE evaluation of the home water softening system by one of our business affiliates.
In homes built before 1978, lead based paint may be present. Generally, if the lead based paint is in good condition, not cracking or peeling, it is not a hazard. If the condition is hazardous, the paint will either need to be removed or sealed in such a manner as to eliminate the hazard.
Another common environmental concern with the home is radon. Radon is a radioactive gas that comes from the natural decay of uranium in the soil. Pretty much all homes have some radon present, tests can determine if the level present is higher than what is considered safe. If the level is too high, a radon reduction system will need to be installed. See more details about our radon testing capabilities in the Radon Section of this website.
Mold is the most dangerous environmental offender of all. Mold often goes undetected because of its invisibility. National media attention has alerted the public to the destructive and possibly toxic dangers of hidden mold spores which could affect your family's home and health. Mold has the potential to cause respiratory health problems and even make your home uninhabitable. Mold can be found in several areas in the home environment. It appears most often in moist areas as little black circles or white, thread-like objects. Also, mold commonly is accompanied by a musty-like odor. Building Inspection Services will always be on the lookout for possible mold "red flags" while performing a routine home inspection. If any areas of concern arise, we will bring them to the client's attention. In addition, Building Inspection Services can provide comprehensive mold screen testing, consisting of air and swab samples which are dictated by the suspected mold situation in the home. See more details in the Mold Section of this webiste.
In older homes built more than 30 years ago, asbestos was used in many types of insulation and other building materials. If the asbestos is releasing fibers into the air, it needs to be removed or repaired by a professional contractor specializing in asbestos cleanup. But, if the asbestos material is in good repair, and not releasing fibers, it poses no hazard and can be left alone.