Web Reviews: Head to the Web for Help Dealing With Mold

The fungi factor: These three Web sites will bring you up to speed on the latest mold-related issues.

August 1, 2004

Mold Web Site Roundup:

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency: www.EPA.gov
MoldUpdate.com
Household Mold Resource Center: www.MoldTips.com

Mold has been around as long as the earth itself, but it’s gained a lot of notoriety in recent years because of publicized links to allergies and other health problems—not to mention its ability to hike insurance rates, lower property values, and throw real estate transactions off track. And with a constant threat of mold-related lawsuits on top of the other risks, it’s clear that practitioners simply can’t afford to be uninformed on this issue.

Head to the Web to stay on top of mold-related news, find tips on spotting mold, and learn how to deal with mold in a home. These Internet sites can help you expand your knowledge about mold and reduce your exposure to the risk of litigation.

  • The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is the government’s official resource for mold and other indoor air quality issues. Its Web site provides a basic explanation of mold and its risks, as well as helpful publications that you can either download for free or read on the Web site. One of them, A Brief Guide to Mold, Moisture, and Your Home provides useful Mold Cleanup Guidelines with tips for cleaning mold out of different rooms. The publication also has a good guide for What to Wear When Cleaning Moldy Areas, complete with pictures and warnings about the dangers of dealing with mold, and a section devoted to Hidden Mold.

    • If you sell commercial real estate, EPA’s other publication is for you. Mold Remediation inSchools and Commercial Buildings addresses the issue of mold from a building owner or landlord’s point of view. There’s a very detailed Checklist for Mold Remediation that would be an excellent reference for someone who’s about to embark on a large-scale mold-removal project at an office building. The other helpful feature of the EPA’s site is the State and Regional Contact Information, an interactive map of the United States that provides a list of Web sites and phone numbers you can use if you have questions about mold or other indoor air quality topics.
  • MoldUpdate.com is a news-oriented Web site managed by the National Association of Mutual Insurance Cos. Its goal is to keep you informed of the latest mold-related lawsuits, government legislation, and science. The site focuses on how mold relates to the insurance industry, but the information can be used by anyone seeking to stay on top of the latest developments in the world of mold. The site’s Mold Legislation page, updated at least once a week, is one of the best features. It tracks toxic mold bills that are pending around the country, including links to the text of the proposed legislation, a description of the bill, and its status. You can find definitions of the types of mold and fungi in the Mold Science section, or search a listing of current and past mold lawsuits at Mold Litigation. To make sure you stay on top of the current mold news, sign up for E-newsletter Updates from MoldUpdate.com.
  • Household Mold Resource Center is a well-organized Web site from the National Association of Home Builders that can help you become a better resource to your customers. You’ll find pages devoted to answering all of the questions they may have, from the most simple (What is Mold?) to the more complex (How Can I Control the Humidity in My Home During the Summer?).
Kelly Quigley

Kelly Quigley is the former managing editor of REALTOR® Magazine.

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