Mold loves to grow in moist and humid locations in your home. You might not think a few unsightly spots are a big deal, but the Center for Disease Control reports multiple health risks resulting from mold exposure. Upper respiratory infection, allergic reactions and lung infections cause significant problems in your day-to-day life, so it’s important to get a mold inspection in Houston if you suspect growth. When you reach out to mold inspection companies, use these pro tips to get a high-quality service that will eliminate your problem.

1. Check Your Homeowners Insurance

Read through your homeowners insurance policy before you make any calls. Houselogic recommends investigating the moisture source that’s causing your unwelcome guest. A flood or burst pipe, and the damage associated with the incident, often falls under the insurance company’s responsibility. If the mold comes from other problems in the house, you’re probably on your own with payment. However, it never hurts to ask.

2. Look Up Company Reviews

Start your search for mold inspection in Houston by looking up online reviews. If anyone in your social circle has experience with this type of service, find out who they recommend. Try to find businesses with a good quantity of reviews to get a solid idea of their reputation. A good starting point is 10-20 reviews, because you can filter out the overly negative or positive reviews that could be fake.

3. Ask About Their Credentials

You want to get rid of your mold problem fast, but you don’t want to hire the first mold inspection company in Houston you encounter without doing due diligence. Learn about their history, whether they hold insurance, the types of projects they work on and whether they coordinate with specialists as needed. Get references from previous clients and get in touch with them. If they’re willing to answer some questions, find out how much they paid for the service, their impressions of the company and whether they would use them in the future.

4. Get Multiple Quotes

Compare prices from various companies, but make sure you’re not comparing apples to oranges. Get a full list of what’s included in the quote. You don’t want to bring someone out due to their low price only to find out that the full fee includes many undisclosed expenses. If you’re not sure what an invoice line item means, ask the company to elaborate.

5. Ask for Written Reports

Ask about the documentation you receive after the mold inspection and testing. Your homeowners insurance company may require it as part of the claims process, plus you get detailed information about the types of fungi present in your home. If the company offers a report, find out if you receive it in person or electronically.

6. Identify the Lab Affiliation

Ideally, the lab testing for mold before and after the cleanup procedure is not directly affiliated with the inspection and remediation companies. You want unbiased information about the mold present in your home. The situation is similar to using a house inspector that’s not affiliated with your real estate agent. You need a neutral third-party to be on your side.

7. Get Their Recommended Cleanup Procedure

The cleanup process varies based on the severity of the mold growth, where it’s located in your home and whether it has penetrated the walls. If you’re dealing with fungi in between multiple walls, you’re facing a long procedure. You may need to stay out of the house for a few days, depending on the company’s containment capabilities. Surface mold, on the other hand, only requires commercial chemicals and a few hours to clear out the room.

8. Make Sure They Act Professionally

Pay attention to every phone call, email, website visit and in-person interaction. Unprofessional behavior is a red flag, especially if they’re acting that way before you become a client. They may end up cutting corners doing the work, which can pose health risks to you and extend the time it takes to eliminate the mold. In a worst-case scenario, you have to hire another company to finish work that the first didn’t complete.

9. Have Them Guarantee Their Work

Mold inspection in Houston—as well as the remediation—costs a lot more than pocket change. You don’t want to empty your wallet and have the mold come back a few weeks later. Read through the paperwork or ask if they guarantee their work. Get details on how the warranty works, how long it promises a mold-free home and the steps required to fix problems within this period.

10. Get Verification After Remediation

You don’t see when mold spores spread through the air or travel through your walls. Confirm that the mold remediation company offers verification from an independent laboratory. This report gives you information on the air quality in your home and whether mold spores are detected.

Hiring a company that does mold inspection in Houston takes time and effort to find the right one, but it’s worth it to work with a service that’s going to fix your problem the first time. Use these expert tips to cut right to the chase and connect with reputable and reliable companies.