Overlooked mold grows buyer costs

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DEAR BARRY: Before buying my home, I hired a home inspector. He found a few minor defects, but the report was basically clean. Then, after moving in, I found a large growth of black mold at the bathtub plumbing access. The mold growth was so pervasive that a large portion of the house had to be gutted and refinished. If our inspector had done a more thorough job, we could have saved thousands of dollars in repair costs. Do we have any recourse against our inspector? --LaurieDEAR LAURIE: Mold is officially outside the scope of a home inspection, as are all environmental hazards. Conditions of that kind are specifically disclaimed in home inspection contracts and are listed by all recognized home inspection associations as not within the scope of a home inspection. On the other hand, the prime directive of a home inspection is to disclose defects that are visible and accessible at the time of the inspection. That includes excessive moisture conditions, moisture stains and moisture damage...