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Moral Dilemma

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Frederick R. Ruffell

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
I recently inspected a house (home) with the worst case of mold I have ever seen. I know that my client will not be lending on it (refi). The homeowner was there during the inspection. Nice woman but did not speak any english, and very pregnant. Also noted the children's toys in the bedrooms and children in the photos on the wall. Would you drop an anonymous tip to child protective services? I don't know if the mold is of the type that can do harm. The rest of the house appeared well kept.
 

Richard Carlsen

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Michigan
Tough one Fred.

Without knowing if the mold is a bad kind, I would not talk to child protective services. Unless I saw nothing that would indicate abuse or neglect, I personally would not interfere. Things might be fairly rough as it is. Not getting the refi means that they will most likely continue to pay a higher interest rate and therefore there are going to be fewer dollars to spend on the family.

You might want to talk to someone who knows mold and find out if it can be managed with ordinary hand cleaning methods. If it can, get a group of people together on a Saturday and with the homeowner’s permission, give her a hand at cleaning up the mold. Once done, consider talking to the LO and offering to update the appraisal - gratis.

Just a thought on an early Sunday morning.
 

jtrotta

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
I'm wiht Richard on that idea, but will go a tid bit further; know anyone in the "mold Biz", see if they would participate in assiting to help "clean it up" pro bono - could be a hell of way to promote biz for them and do a good deed at the same time. Also, in our town we have one of the Church organization's that get the local high school kids to join forces and help out people with various situation's, this sounds like one of them - don't know if your area is similar, but it may be worth a phone call or two.

good luck

8)
 

Jeff Horton

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Alabama
NO!

A close very friend of mine just had some dealings with a similar agency. Appears ex-boy friend called DHR and said George (name changed) was sexually abusing her 6 daughter. George being the new boyfriend. When in fact they had only been out a couple of times and there was no way he had a chance to be alone with her daughter.

Funny thing is both boyfriends are named George and after the interview with the daughter ex-boyfriend is the suspect. Seems he called and didn't leave his name. Call it poetic justis! They finally figured it out after he disappeared for a couple of weeks.

Anyway, after seeing what they drug my friend through, an excellent mother BTW. I would never get them involved unless there was a real danger to kids. Like no doubt in my mind. They have way to too much power and can make your life a living hell.

So no I wouldn't.
 

Mike Garrett RAA

Elite Member
Gold Supporting Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Colorado
How do you spell...supposition???
 

Blue1

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
California
I agree....I'd not call child protective services. Where mold is concerned, I'd be really careful. When I see such conditions I note on the report "apparent" mold because I am not an expert in the field. From there, I note that "if" it is mold it may or may not pose a health hazard and go on to recommend an environmental assessment. (My 2 cents worth anyway)
 

Steve Owen

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 16, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
Missouri
I agree. Appraisers should not get involved with child protective authorities unless there is clear and imminent danger. You said yourself that you don't know what kind of mold it is.

Appraise the house "as is" or "subject to mold clean-up" depending on what the LO instructs you to do. In your remarks you can recommend professional service.

It's a tough deal, sometimes, but we can't solve all the world's problems.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
Discuss this situation with your client. You may want to make your value conditional upon some type of health inspection, you may just get the ball rolling.
 

Frederick R. Ruffell

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2002
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
Thanks all you have confirmed my conclusions. I do not know that there is any danger (Mike I think it is s u p p o s i t i o n) I just know that there is alot of fuzzy stuff on the walls.
 

Jeff Horton

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Alabama
Everyone jumps to the conclusion that everything we see is mold but sometimes it just mildew. Dawned on me doing this house that the sewer had flooded. So I now use the term "mold and or mildew" because I really don't know which it is.
 
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