When hiring a professional with mold certification, take the time to find out what that certification means. Numerous organizations offer mold inspector certification, including The National Organization of Remediators and Mold Inspectors; RespirNet, in a newly formed alliance with the Environmental Solutions Association (ESA); The Professional Mold Inspection Institute (PMII); Mold Inspection Consulting and Remediation Organization (MICRO); and many others. Different organizations have different requirements for mold inspector certification, so qualifications may vary somewhat from organization to organization.
Many mold inspectors are professional engineers, in which case they are uniquely qualified to examine your property and supervise the cleanup of any mold there, but not all mold inspectors are engineers, so ask about his or her qualifications, degree, and certifications.
Different organizations provide training in different ways. Some professionals take mold inspector certification classes online, while others take courses in person and still others use a combination of study materials and phone support from inspectors. All must pass an exam at the end of their course of study in order to earn mold inspector certification. At the completion of the program, certified mold inspectors are qualified to inspect your home for mold and more.
Certified mold inspectors learn to locate and identify different kinds of molds in your home. Identifying different types of molds is an important skill because some types response better to certain types of treatment while other types respond better to other types of treatment. They take an air sample for mold, and check for mold on various surfaces as well. Certified mold inspectors also learn to identify moisture issues in your home, which must be corrected if your mold problem is going to go away. They are generally qualified to supervise the entire cleanup process in accordance with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency guidelines.
Probably. Mold can hide in many places and certified mold inspectors know just where to look. There are also many different kinds of mold, and the best way to get rid of one kind of mold may not be the best way to get rid of another kind. A certified mold inspector should be able to tell you exactly what types of mold you’re dealing with and should know the best ways to deal with them.
When hiring a certified mold inspector, ask what type of mold inspector certification courses he or she took and which mold certification he or she holds. Ask to see his or her certificate and, if you are unsure about it, contact the organization issuing the mold certification to make sure the professional you are talking with remains in good standing. Know that anyone can call himself or herself a mold specialist, so find out what he or she means by that.
Ask questions. Ask if he or she follows the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency guidelines (if not, you may want to move on). Ask if he or she takes air samples and what else he or she does to check for mold. Ask if he or she will be available to supervise the cleanup process and test the property again for mold after the cleanup has been completed to make sure all mold was removed. Ask if he or she is a licensed engineer or what other degrees or licenses he or she holds.
Ask for references, as well. Don’t hire a certified mold inspector just based on the recommendation of another customer, but an inspector that’s good at the job should have a few happy customers to whom he or she can introduce you.
Follow this link to locate certified inspectors in your area that can test your home for mold.