What It Takes To Become A Mold
Remediation Specialist In The DC Area
Hint: Not Much
Mold remediation is a relatively new concept in the DC area. The business was born right around the turn of the century and has grown exponentially in the last 20+ years as homeowners learned more about the dangers of household mold. In the early days, mold remediation was run like the wild west, which left the door open for the unscrupulous contractors who all but ruined the reputation of the budding home service industry.
Now, local governments still have a long way to go toward reigning in the mold industry, but they’ve at least taken steps to make mold companies prove the knowledge they claim to possess. Sadly, in DC, it is still far too easy to call yourself a mold remediation professional.
The Wrong Focus
The language for mold remediation regulations in the DC area focuses mainly on process minutia and has little to say about whether you know what you are doing. It does require that you pass one of many certification tests but spends most of its energy on making sure that you follow their rules: like putting up warning signs that are the right color and shape around your workspace.
This leaves plenty of room for every clean-up company around DC to add mold remediation to their list of services, even if they only deal with mold a few times a year and just have one certified guy in ten “supervising” the workers. Between those companies and the handyman contractors with a single certification, there’s an awful lot of poorly trained people out there attempting the complicated task of mold remediation.
A Permanent State Of Learning
When we started in the mold business, we were just as hapless as everyone else. And the more we learned, the more we realized that we knew nothing — just like Mr. Snow. So we started searching for ways to learn as much about mold and mold remediation as we could.
There are several professional associations in the mold industry, each with certification programs they’ve designed and classes to take. We figured out who was at the top and started learning. Not to keep our business (the single certification was good enough for that), but to ensure that we gave our customers the best service possible.
There is an astonishing amount of information about household mold: how it affects a family’s health, how to prevent mold colonies in your home, and how to get rid of them if they’re already in your home. There are effective and ineffective ways to contain the workspace, best and worst procedures for removal, and different schools of thought on killing agents.
Over the years, we’ve absorbed every bit of information we could get our hands on and have always treated mold removal as the serious business it is. Even now, we learn something new every year, which is why we continue to take classes and earn new certifications in the field.
But, we don’t have to, and most don’t. With minimal certification and a touch of knowledge, anyone can call themselves an expert in mold remediation, and they do.
We are certified as a Certified Mold Remediation Supervisor with the American Council for Accredited Certification, which hands that certification to only 16% of the companies in this industry. They’d hand it out more often, but few companies can meet the required standards.
We also hold certifications as a Mold Removal Specialist from the folks who literally wrote the book on mold remediation (ANSI/IICRC S520 Standard for Professional Mold Remediation) as well as every other certification that the Institute Of Inspection, Cleaning & Restoration Certification offers.
We are, of course, licensed by the Washington DC Department of Energy & Environment, which has rigid liability, process, and reporting regulations in place. And, you know, you have to pass that one test.
We are EPA certified for safely dealing with lead paint, a member of the Indoor Air Quality Association, and our company founder, David Myrick, is one of only about 75 people in the world to hold the title of Restoration Industry Association Certified Mold Professional.
As you can see, we’ve done our homework and then some. You could safely say that we don’t take our business lightly.
The Bottom Line
While there is still a bit of a wild west feel to the mold remediation industry, we don’t want any part of that. All we’ve ever needed to do was pass a single test, adhere to some rules and buy a lot of insurance. And, sadly, that’s all many of our competitors have ever done.
Valor Mold Removal is a certified and experienced mold testing and remediation company. We are fully insured and fully licensed. We also provide crawl space encapsulation, soda blasting, humidity control, and air quality cleaning.