There are many homes coming on the market after sitting vacant with the utilities off. Moisture often enters these homes by a busted water line, condensation or water intrusion from the outside. Left unchecked, this moisture invites the growth of mold. Since mold spores are microscopic and exist virtually everywhere, I'm actually surprised when I don't see any obvious mold growth.
My team leader, Judith Green, lists a lot of bank owned homes and I, as a buyer's agent for her, show many of these homes. So many buyers will look at something that appears to be mold and it happens to be black and they cover their nose and mouth, shrink back and say "it's BLACK mold!". Mold appears in many different colors and not all black mold is toxic. In fact, all toxic mold is not black. There are hundreds of thousands of types of mold and according to the CDC, all mold should be handled the same way and it's not even necessary to test mold to determine the type.
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About a year ago, I spoke to an inspector who does mold inspections and he said he has never seen "THE BLACK MOLD". It's not rare, but it's not common either.
Some people are allergic to mold and will have more of a reaction to it than others. Personally, if I go into a basement that has mold, I will eventually start coughing. The heavier the mold, the sooner I'll cough.
This is the worst mold I've ever seen, it was on EVERY surface in the basement and in the photo here, it looked like cotton candy!
The buyer of this house did hire a mold remediation company, since his wife and kids were very sensitive to mold. He also has three sump pumps and a back up generator to ensure his basement will not have water again.
So when you see "mold", it should get your attention, but don't let it scare you. Yes it needs to be dealt with, removed and prevented from returning, but it doesn't mean the house should be condemned.