Wednesday, December 12, 2007
Bats in the belfry and mold in the attic
I did an inspection today on one of the foreclosed houses that I seem preordained to make bids upon. There weren't any bats, but if there had been they would likely have been sick puppies. To no ones great surprise, there was mold in the attic -not just a little, lots! This house, like so many 70's homes was built with inadequate roof ventilation and that was further exacerbated by the owner (or some helpful insulation contractor) when they insluated right out to the edges of the attic, thus covering and blocking the eves vents from doing their job. So, no circulation, combined with poorly placed can vents and you get mold.
Likely this isn't the dreaded "toxic black mold" that everyone is so afraid of but we took a sample for the lab to test, just to be sure. There were other issues with the house, most just really maintenance things, but a couple more of serious enough nature to require some action. There are almost always going to be issues in a foreclosed house, some of them liely to be serious, due to the neglect that the house has gone through.
The game now becomes one of "what will the bank do?" A few months back banks might have been willing to make the necessary repairs. These days they are not so inclined and many aren't even ofering any compensation to the buyers to fix it themselves. Some say it's because they have already dumped the prices and can't afford to loose any more on the place. Some say they just don't care any more - take it or leave it. Of course getting them to say anythng at all can be the challenge. I've had one request in for over 2 weeks now, with no feedback at all from the bank. See yesterday's post - Waiting for Godot and the banks. It's all so surreal. So this great buy of a house is now maybe a little less of a deal.