Mold Test Results & Upset Agent

Just wondering about your experiences with this and if I am in the wrong or am I operating ethically:
I found 2 suspect locations in the home with “potential organic growth”. Included it in my report, client wanted me to go back, capture samples and send to lab. Done.
Results came back: Cladosporium, Penicillium/Talaromyces, Aspergillus/Penicillium w/ Hyphal Fragments. Not great results.
So, I sent the report over in typical DDID format, even provided them with a local remediation company who does FREE consults.
I then proceeded to advise the buyers agent that I would be reaching out to the listing agent so they could notify the home owners (occupied by an 80+ year old couple). This seemed like the ethical thing to do and as stated in our COE: “The InterNACHI® member shall not release any information about the inspection or the client to a third party unless doing so is necessary to protect the safety of others”.
Well… the buyers agent told me that was in “poor taste and bad practice”.
I asked her “should I notify the current home owner if I had found an active gas leak or a balcony that was about to collapse?” still waiting on my much anticipated reply. figured I would share here to clear my mind and get some advise.

Thank you in advance for your candor and responses -

Were your samples swabs, spore traps, both?

one swab and one tape-lift.

If you can, post few pics of this mold infestation, thanks.

The owners are under an obligation to share this type of information with their insurer in a timely manner especially if a claim is involved… Now imagine for a moment who they might attempt to come after if somehow the insurance company gets a copy of your report way after the fact and you made no attempt to inform them. By sending this information to the listing agent you have removed the liability from yourself and placed it squarely on the listing agent where it belongs and they can no longer throw you under the bus. Don’t allow anyone to dissuade you from doing the right thing especially when doing so lowers your own liability.


Simply taking direct lift samples does not qualify an area to be an issue unless proper protocols are followed. For example, were either area in question more than 10 sq ft in size? if so, why didn’t you also collect air samples? In my opinion, notifying anyone of a mold problem is premature unless complete sampling has occurred.

Plywood pic is from underneath the kitchen sink in the crawlspace - OSB photo is in an attic space, near the eve over garage.

Is the 10sq.ft a rule of thumb that I should consider going by?
In this case, the complete analysis would be the lab results wouldn’t it?
Thanks for the advice.

The 10 sq ft rule is protocol by the American Industrial Hygiene Association. Neither area appears to exceed 10 sq ft so the swab sample confirms the presence of mold but likely does not present a hazard based on the pictures you have provided.


Michael nailed it.
That’s why i asked what type of samples were collected.
I tell my clients WHY should I charge you a fee to determine what type of mold?
It’s mold! Gotta go whether it’s black ,blue, pink, etc.
Air quality sampling will determine if the spores have dispersed into the air causing it to be “elevated”.
If it’s 10 sq ft or less, that’s called a level1 job, even per EPA protocol.
No containment areas with men in moon suits required.

There’s nothing to disclose to the owner without those tests.
Good luck! :cowboy_hat_face:

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You did what you thought was right, and with the best intentions. I don’t think it’s in poor taste.

I would not share anything with the selling side though.

As for the COE, I think if it as an imminent hazard, like exhaust vent from the furnace terminating directly above the bed in master bedroom, I’ll mention it.

Good luck!

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