Today Dave and Thom are talking with our weekly guest, Michelle Guth of Diversified Mortgage about how employment effects qualifying for home loans. And later we have Darius Elison of One Call Restoration giving us the low down on mold in the home. Don't miss this information packed show!

Seg #1


Dave Burnett:                    This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I'm Dave Burnett. He is Thom Dallman, the co-owner, designated broker of Core Group Realty. CoreGroupRealty.com. That's a website where you can go and find out all things real estate, what's happening in the Valley, and what may be happening in your neighborhood as well, Thom another great day.

Thom Dallman:                  There's all kinds of great things happening out there these days.

Dave Burnett:                    There is. You know-

Thom Dallman:                  We've got the Parade of Homes going on, so the likelihood of houses that you can go check out being near you is high.

Dave Burnett:                    Get some new ideas for maybe your home or maybe if you're looking to buy a home, what you would like in your next home.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly. Exactly. Yeah, the Parade of Homes is a great opportunity to really kind of just check out what's happening in the industry and stuff like that. We've had Rod Givens, the Chairman of the Board for the BCASWI, the Builders and Contractors Association of Southwest Idaho on here talking about the Parade, and how it's just kind of a showcase of the feature and stuff like that that the builders have. That's running 11:00-5:00, Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, so make sure you check out their website or just swing by Core Group Realty and grab a magazine, so you can go see where the nearest home is.

Dave Burnett:                    You know what's kind of funny, you mentioned this, that made me think about two weeks ago, I ran into somebody who owns a home that was a Parade of Home house back in the 1980s.

Thom Dallman:                  Bragging rights.

Dave Burnett:                    Yeah. Well the new features, which were such new and innovative features now, I mean they actually had what'd they call it? A vacuum butler. The little thing you can sweep the dirt into an HVAC.

Thom Dallman:                  Oh yeah. An HVAC, yeah, vacuum system.

Dave Burnett:                    That was a new deal in that house. That was a big deal.

Thom Dallman:                  Oh yeah.

Dave Burnett:                    But it was just kind of funny because he was talking about things that were new big deals in his home, that now are just kind of standard or gone away, one or the other.

Thom Dallman:                  Commonplace, exactly. Exactly. Yeah, that's kind of the interesting part of these older Parade of Homes. You can have the bragging rights, but yeah, a lot of that stuff has kind of become standard. So you were the innovative first house to have that stuff at the time, which is fun.

Dave Burnett:                    Yeah. We've talked about the Parade of Homes and had guests in talking about it. But one of the things that is on the Parade of Homes this year, I noticed, is that new Smart Lock.

Thom Dallman:                  Oh yeah, the front door lock that-

Dave Burnett:                    It's a front door lock that you can lock your doors from your smart phone, if you think you forgot it.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly yeah, you can do a lot of stuff from your smart phone for your house these days. It's kind of crazy the technology.

Dave Burnett:                    Yeah, you touch it, and a blue light circles around it. It was like, oh that's kind of weird.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah, we've talked about the doorbell too, with the video camera on it, so you can be on your phone and see who's at the front door.

Dave Burnett:                    And if you're thinking to yourself, I don't know where they're at, as you mentioned Thom, you can pick up one of the magazines and find out what's happening, and where they're at.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly. Yeah it's crazy these days.

Dave Burnett:                    You've got some things going on too with Core Group Realty.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah. We've got some great listings that have listed this week, that we can talk about. We've got all kinds of fun stuff happening. We're actually have, as this is airing, we have a table down at See Spot Walk happening. So we've got some of our agents down there as well as people walking their dogs for the See Spot Walk, the sponsor of the Humane Society.

Dave Burnett:                    And just in case if you've never heard this show before as things are switching around and moving a bit, if you've never heard, you go, wait a minute. That's dogs. What does that have to do with real estate?

Thom Dallman:                  Right.

Dave Burnett:                    It all kind of ties together.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly.

Dave Burnett:                    As you like to say here in your agency. A pet really does make it a home.

Thom Dallman:                  Make a house a home. Yep, it sure does, and that's why we partnered with the Idaho Humane Society last year to kind of promote that and to really kind of let people know the happiness that an animal does bring into a home, the warmth and stuff. We've had segments where we've talked about home safety and stuff like that for pets. We're big believers in pets. We have animals running through our office. Well not animals, dogs. We're very dog-friendly here, and love our animals so. I believe that everybody should kind of think about that [crosstalk 00:04:04].

Dave Burnett:                    You can find out more about that partnership with the Humane Society at CoreGroupRealty.com.

Thom Dallman:                  Sure, yeah. Yeah. Don't forget to check out the featured page, where we can see these new listings. It'll take a minute to talk about a couple of them. The first one I want to talk about is over in Star, Idaho. It's 603 North Carswell Way. This is a three-bedroom, two-bath, single levels home. It's about 1,899 square feet, so a good space in there. It's got a covered front patio to kind of sit and have your coffee and say hi to the neighbors in the morning if you want and an oversized back patio as well with a barbecue on it. Beautifully landscaped with a spacious floor plan, vaulted ceilings, a nice cozy family room, hardwood floors that have just been refinished, just a great house over there in Star. 603 North Carswell. That's C-A-R-S-W-E-L-L Way, and it's on the market for $235,000 right now.

Dave Burnett:                    Star is, I think it's really one of the hot little communities right now that people are moving to.

Thom Dallman:                  It really is. There's some great opportunities out there as far as the new construction and newer homes that are going in and stuff. Yeah, just people kind of gravitating towards Star because it's still convenient to everywhere in the Valley. But it's still a small town feel, so that you have that great community involvement and feel going on. So up and coming. A lot of people like it.

Dave Burnett:                    So, if you've thought about Star, this is a chance to take a look at this home and see if it's a right fit for you.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly. So check that one out. Also, check out 7028 West Bluebird Drive. This is a three-bedroom, two-bath, 1,204 square foot home here in Boise. This is right down there off of Gary Lane and State Street, so great location in Northwest Boise. All that convenient stuff that's right there at State Street and Gary Lane. Albertson's, WinCo, not WinCo sorry, Walmart.

Dave Burnett:                    Yep. Well WinCo's just up the road.

Thom Dallman:                  Right up the road, yeah. Right there at State [crosstalk 00:06:19].

Dave Burnett:                    Yeah. And that is a real hot little bed right there. They're putting in a Black Bear restaurant in there.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah, all kinds of restaurants. Yep. The Black Bear Diner.

Dave Burnett:                    Yep, they got some different sorts of restaurants back in there, so it's and area that's really, really expanded.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly. I believe there's a new taco place that I have to check out there too. Yeah, it's a great location and great price, $209,900. If anybody's following the marketplace right now, you know that there's not a lot of availability in that $200,000 price point right now. So great price point, $209,900 for this three-bed/two-bath. It's newly remodeled, so they've put in some new stuff in there with modern finishes, new A/C, a water heater. It's got a spacious covered patio. Once again, kind of the outdoor living space is perfect here. You have a kitchen with lots of natural light, with a split floor plan.

Dave Burnett:                    Nice.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah, it's really convenient to everything including the foothills, for those that like to bike or run. A lot of people like that circuit that kind of goes up Seaman's Gulch-

Dave Burnett:                    Pill Road, up Pill Road.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah, and up Pill Road and around that way. So lots of availability to all kinds of recreational stuff there.

Dave Burnett:                    Yeah, and you're not far, at that location, from Highway 55 if you're jumping up to McCall or Cascade that way as well.

Thom Dallman:                  Correct. Yeah, yeah.

Dave Burnett:                    It's a good location.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah, check it out. Check it out. That's 7028 West Bluebird Drive in Boise. Then the final new one that we've got on this week is a four-bedroom, two-bath. This one's at 12490 Stillwater Drive in Boise. This is a great two-story with a three-car garage. It's a four-bedroom/two-bath, 2,102 square feet. It does have a guest room, great room, family room, R/V parking, so you got plenty of space to get your R/V in there if you want. This is priced at about $250,000.

Dave Burnett:                    That's on Stillwater?

Thom Dallman:                  This is Stillwater, yep. 12490 Stillwater Drive in Boise.

Dave Burnett:                    If you're looking for these, the thing to do is ... You know, the old days, you'd go out, and you'd drive around everywhere.

Thom Dallman:                  Right.

Dave Burnett:                    Now you just jump online at coregrouprealty.com, and you can see these three featured homes and everything else pretty much that's listed. Photographs, in fact, some of the homes, they've gone to the point of having those virtual tours on them, some with drone ariel views of it.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly. We try to showcase as much as we can on these homes.

Dave Burnett:                    Yep. So check those out as they have varying degrees, but all of the homes with photographs and locations. The other thing I like about the website is if you are looking for a school, you can specify the parameters.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah, you can put in the school district that you're looking at and find the homes in the area.

Dave Burnett:                    In that area, so that really works out well for parents. I know that's a big deal.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly. Yep. Yeah it's really super convenient. Any information that you need, our system is updated every 15 minutes from the MLS, so it's one of the most current and accurate systems out there to be able to look at properties available.

Dave Burnett:                    And as fast as properties are moving, that's a handy thing to have.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly.

Dave Burnett:                    Just so you know what ... Too late, that one's gone.

Thom Dallman:                  Yep, exactly.

Dave Burnett:                    Check that out at CoreGroupRealty.com. Gonna be talking to Michelle [Gouth 00:09:45] coming up in just a few minutes. Gonna find out about work and incomes, types of incomes. Not really sure how many different kinds there are, but yeah. So we'll talk to Michelle Gouth about that as we continue. This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I'm Dave Burnett. He is Thom Dallman with Core Group Realty. Core Group, of course, one of the sponsors. Diversified Mortgage as well. Core Group Realty, give them a call today, 208-933-7777. Find out why you get more with Core.



Seg #2


Dave Burnett:                    This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I'm Dave Burnett. And of course, every week we get a chance to talk to Michelle Guth with Diversified Mortgage, equal opportunity lender, about all things lending. There's a lot that goes into getting a loan that goes with a house and a company like Diversified can help walk you through the steps to make sure that you are pre-qualified, ready to go, and all of the dominoes were in place. I guess, Michelle, one of the things we want to talk about is employment. Length of employment, kinds of employments, and job history, because really that's where it comes down to on a lot of it, when it comes to a loan.

Michelle Guth:                  Absolutely. That along with credit, we want to ensure that the stability of the employment is there and likely to continue to ensure that we're going to have, obviously, the income in to secure that loan and make the payments.

Dave Burnett:                    Now, I want to clarify a couple of things. Now, there is employment through a job, your regular job, where you get the I9s, not the I9s, but the W4s and the W2s and all that. There is self-employment, which is a whole different kettle of fish, and then there's temporary employment. How does all that sort out?

Michelle Guth:                  Well, typically we have to see a consistent two year work history. It doesn't necessarily have to be in the same field of work, but it does have to be consistent for the preceding two years. Self-employment, same thing. We're going to want to see two years' worth of tax returns to ensure again that we have a good idea of how the income has been derived for the previous two years. Quite often, we'll have a client come in that had a business for the first year, and they may have done very well, but again, they really need to see a two year history of some consistency, so they are going to demand that two years for the self-employed.

Dave Burnett:                    That's something to keep in mind if you are self-employed, that that's just a prerequisite and you really can't get around it.

Michelle Guth:                  Correct. And we've actually ran into some issues with clients, where they started out as a W2 wage earner with a company and maybe the company says we're going to go ahead and make you a 1099 employee, at which time they're now consider self-employed. So even if they worked at that job for two years, it doesn't matter. You're newly self-employed now. We need two years' history of that 1099 income.

Dave Burnett:                    Obviously, if you have questions about that, they can contact you there at Diversified.

Michelle Guth:                  Please do, especially if you're considering a job change and buying a home. Give us a call and we can let you know if there's some potential pitfalls that may arise.

Dave Burnett:                    Exactly. There's a lot of companies here in town, large companies that deal with temp agencies, and some people have been working for years and years on temp agencies. How does that work?

Michelle Guth:                  We do have some staffing agencies in town where it is very common for some of our bigger corporations to utilize them through a staffing agency. For example, Micron, Hewlett-Packard, they do quite a bit of employment through a staffing agency. Although staffing agencies are typically considered part-time income ... not necessarily part-time, but not guaranteed income, as temporary, we will be able to utilize that income if you can show that you have worked in that capacity for two years through an employer.

Dave Burnett:                    So that two year rule still applies.

Michelle Guth:                  In that scenario, yes. We have to do a little added due diligence in that scenario to make sure that that is a consistent policy of a company, that they do have contracts through these staffing companies, but as long as you can show that you've worked in that type of a agreement for two years, we can, in many times, use that income.

Dave Burnett:                    Is that just a letter that you get from the staffing agency, or how do you verify that?

Michelle Guth:                  Well, from the staffing agency, and we actually go back to the corporation that has the contract in place with them, as well, to confirm that that is a standard practice, that they do have a contractual agreement with them for their employees.

Dave Burnett:                    All right. Very good. That could cause question, though, for somebody who maybe is working for an HP or working for a Micron and whether that is considered permanent or not. What kind of problems can that cause for you?

Michelle Guth:                  Well, if we don't have that two year history of working in that capacity, we cannot utilize the income, so it is going to pose a problem to help us qualify for the loan.

Dave Burnett:                    Okay. It always helps them to make sure you express that right upfront when you're applying for the loan that you're in this situation or that situation. Not just that I work at HP or I work at Micron, to make sure you say that?

Michelle Guth:                  Correct. In most cases, it's going to show on your pay stub that your income's coming from a staffing agency and the lender's going to probably pose the question right off the bat, whether it's brought up or not. But if you happen to work for another company where it's not necessarily evident that it's a temp position, it's definitely something you want to give full disclosure on upfront to avoid any problems down the road.

Dave Burnett:                    Very good. Now when it comes to self-employment, again we talked about the fact they want two years. If you're working part-time for a company, working part-time self-employed, how does that sit down?

Michelle Guth:                  Well, as far as part-time self-employed, that's okay if it's part-time, again as long as they have that two year history, because I'm still going to derive the income off of those tax returns. The other thing is just ensuring that you don't get a little too crazy with your write-offs, because we can look at those gross sales and see that you've done very well with your gross receipts. However, after you do your depreciation, all your deductions, and so forth, there's a calculation we have to do and we are going to be basically deriving an income that's much less than most likely what you're showing in your gross receipts, so-

Dave Burnett:                    It's not just based off of your tax returns?

Michelle Guth:                  It is off your tax returns, but there are several line items that we have to analyze to determine what income is left that we can derive from to qualify for the loan.

Dave Burnett:                    I gotcha. If you have too many write-offs, your business really didn't do you any good anyway.

Michelle Guth:                  Exactly. If you are self-employed ... I have encouraged some of my clients that are self-employed that are thinking of filing their taxes, bring them in to me before you file them with the IRS. Let me look at them. I'll do the mortgage analysis on them. Let them know where they're at for their final income. So before they file, they may say, all right, that's not quite as much income as I what ideally like to show in order to get this priced home. At that point, they maybe want to reassess and say okay, maybe we won't take as many deductions this year and take the tax hit so that we can qualify for more house.

Dave Burnett:                    Other than just standard employment where you work for a company, temporary employment, and self-employment, is there any other categories that fall out there?

Michelle Guth:                  Secondary employment. When you have two jobs, I have had several clients where they'll work two different jobs-

Dave Burnett:                    At the same time?

Michelle Guth:                  At the same time. Correct. They have a primary and then a secondary. In some cases, they even split their hours. They may work 20 hours at one and 20 hours at the other. Common sense would say, well I should be able to use them both. I can basically document and see that they've been doing this for the last several months. However, for secondary employment, it's the same two year rule. You have to show that you have consistently worked two jobs for two years in order to count that secondary income. For example, let's say they worked for a full time employer in 2016 for just one job. 2017, they went to two jobs and worked 20 hours at one, 20 hours at two. I can only give them credit for whatever they deem to be their primary position.  [crosstalk 00:06:51]

Dave Burnett:                    Wow. That could be a detrimental hit to someone.

Michelle Guth:                  Very much so. Before you start restructuring-

Dave Burnett:                    Your work history-

Michelle Guth:                  Your work history and so forth, talk to a mortgage advisor if you're thinking of buying a house, just to make sure it's not going to pose an issue for you.

Dave Burnett:                    Now that second job, if it's ... let's say I work for company A over here, the factory where we make widgets, but my part-time job is over here where we make do-dads. If I do that for one year and then I change and I make whatchamacallits for another year, does it have to be the same part-time job for two years, or just that it's consistent for two years?

Michelle Guth:                  Are the widgets or the digits the primary, that's the key question.

Dave Burnett:                    Maybe I should have been [crosstalk 00:07:33] What if that secondary job, if it changes within the year, then it doesn't count?

Michelle Guth:                  You can actually. Again, you can have consistency. If you can show you've consistently worked for two jobs for two years, you can have some job changes, but it's worth also mentioning that FHA, which is a very popular loan program, also has a rule that on the primary job, they don't want to see that you've had more three jobs in the preceding 12 months. Again, it comes down to common sense. We don't want to see a ton of job changes. We want to see some consistency. Put some common sense to it, and you're probably going to be fine.

Dave Burnett:                    I guess it's that kind of thing, if you were loaning money to somebody, if they were job hopping, and coming around and piecemealing, putting it together, I guess I wouldn't be real quick to say, yeah, I'll loan you 500 bucks. I'm sure I'll get that money back. I assume that any lending institution would be the same way. They just want to see consistency.

Michelle Guth:                  Correct. Absolutely.

Dave Burnett:                    Very good. Michelle Guth with Diversified Mortgage, and we talk about this a lot, but we want to mention it again. Pre-qualify, pre-qualify, pre-qualify if you're looking for a home.

Michelle Guth:                  Absolutely. Come sit down and go through all the parameters. Make sure you're set up for success before you start shopping for that home.

Dave Burnett:                    One of my favorites stories, Michelle tells us how a gal that came in didn't think she was going to qualify for a loan, went through the process, and had good news, as Michelle said, "Yep, you're good."

Michelle Guth:                  Yeah, she was quite pleasantly surprised. She thought I was going to send her out the door packing. But we'll never do that anyway. Whether we qualify now or later, we're going to give you that roadmap to get there.

Dave Burnett:                    Michelle, if somebody wants to get hold of you at Diversified Mortgage, how do they do it?

Michelle Guth:                  Give us a call at 853-7878 or visit our website, dmgloans.com.

Dave Burnett:                    And if I'm just dipping my toe in the water to see, that's okay to come in and sit down with you?

Michelle Guth:                  Absolutely. We'd love to sit down and talk through it with you.

Dave Burnett:                    Very good. Diversified Mortgage, and just so you know, and I say this from time to time. I redid our home loan this past year with them and they did such a good job. Molly and the whole staff, they did do such a good job walking me through, because really while we talk every week, I'm really a novice at this, and so you were very good. Your company staff was very good at helping walk us all through it. Got it done, got it wrapped up, and actually shortened the length of our loan and got us a better rate.

Michelle Guth:                  Thanks, Dave. We appreciate the business.

Dave Burnett:                    It worked out well. Diversified Mortgage, an equal opportunity lender. We'll continue on the other side. This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz being brought to you by Diversified Mortgage, and of course, by Core Group Realty. Give Core a call today, 933 ... let me put the 208 in there. 208-933-7777. Find out why you get more with Core.


Seg #3


Dave Burnett:                    This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz. I am Dave Burnett. He is Thom Dallman, the co-owner designated broker of Core Group Realty. Coregrouprealty.com, that's the website to go to if any questions about Core Group and some of the sponsors they have, some of the vendors they have, some of the homes that are listed. You'll find it all there or call 2089337777. And we have a guest in studio today.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah. Darius from One Call restorations here to chat a little bit about mold. Welcome Darius.

Darius Elison:                     Good to be here.

Dave Burnett:                    When it comes to mold, that's a word that one time was frightening and at one time it meant burn the house down you can't sell it (laughs). But we've found out over time that it's not a death penalty for a house.

Darius Elison:                     It is not. In fact, it's not nearly as dangerous as most people think. It's not scary as most people think. The most common place to find mold is the attic and crawl spaces turned living spaces anyway. So, it's not.

Dave Burnett:                    But it's not something that if you find that is you have mold, it's not something that you can take care of with a spray bottle. It does take treatment to get it to a position to where a house can be sold.

Darius Elison:                     Yeah, absolutely. The most common myth about mold is it can be cleaned with bleach or it can be covered with paint or [inaudible 00:01:18] and neither one of those methods are approved or recommended.

Dave Burnett:                    You know, mold has been in the news a lot with the hurricanes and the flooding they have in Texas. That's one of the biggest things that homeowners are finding there. They had all that water. It sat, it kept things soaked and you put a little warm temperature on it and guess what grows?

Darius Elison:                     It'd be mold city (laughs).

Dave Burnett:                    But for us here in Idaho, we live in a dry climate. The mold-

Darius Elison:                     Super dry.

Dave Burnett:                    Mold is still something that happens. How does that work?

Darius Elison:                     Well, most commonly especially with the crawl space and attics is just a lack of ventilation. We have a really dry climate,  so we have less mold than other parts of the country, but ventilation is key and with attic ventilation you got to make sure that you have the proper amount of ventilation per square foot of attic. Also, make sure you don't have anything that could be causing condensation. Ventilation pipes going all the way through the roof and being sealed properly are a huge part of it. Bath fans and-

Thom Dallman:                  Unfortunately, we've run into that where we've seen the bath fans or even lingerie drier vents going right into the attics [crosstalk 00:02:25] all the way up through or not, so ...

Dave Burnett:                    That's not a good thing to map your drier into the attic.

Darius Elison:                     No it's not.

Dave Burnett:                    I guess another thing to check in, you mentioned the seals that I had on my home several years ago. We had it re-roofed and found out that the little rubber gaskets around the pipes had just gotten old and shrunk down and water was able to get down in there.

Darius Elison:                     Yeah. Those roof jacks over time they're going to crack and then once water gets down in there it's usually localized mold around those areas just on the bottom side of the [inaudible 00:02:59] but it can definitely be a problem. You should be having your roof looked at regularly every twice a year. We recommend getting into that attic and crawls spaces just to see if there is anything going on that you can get on top of early and save a lot of money.

Dave Burnett:                    Twice a year then?

Darius Elison:                     Yeah.

Dave Burnett:                    Just to take a look. What do you look for when you go up there?

Darius Elison:                     Just look for anything out of the norm. If there's something that's discolored in areas, most people know what mold looks like. It's going to be dark and fuzzy and you see that kind of stuff then it's a good time to call somebody. A lot of times even with brand new homes what we're finding is a brand new home gets built, the lumber materials sit on the ground on the site and it'll get rained on and stuff and then the same lumber to trusses will get thrown into the building construction. So, on a brand new home sale, you get a home inspection that's done and it'll come back with just spotty mold on the trusses on these brand new materials. We come in there and we take care of it very easily and very expensively.

Dave Burnett:                    When it comes to the crawl spaces of your home, how often should that be looked at and what ... It's dark down there. There's spiders, there's snakes, I don't really want to go down there.

Darius Elison:                     Nobody really wants to go in to the crawl space.

Dave Burnett:                    Can you tell by smell?

Darius Elison:                     You can definitely tell by smell. If it smell funny that's a good thing. We do free crawl space inspections because it's not just mold you can find down there. So, it's always good on a crawl space or attic both to ... If you don't feel comfortable going in there yourself just call a professional to come out and do a free assessment for you.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah. For sure

Dave Burnett:                    So I open up the-

Thom Dallman:                  There's people that could do that for you (laughs).

Dave Burnett:                    That's a good thing because there's creepy crawlers down there. So, you pull up the hatch on your house to go in a crawl space. What should I smell when I open that up? I mean what does a healthy home smell like?

Darius Elison:                     Shouldn't smell like anything. It should just smell like dirt, they're outside. The best time I think to check the crawl spaces is in the spring. That's when the water tables is the highest. That way if there is a water issue in there we can address it because if that water sits in there and that humidity gets above 60% it gets mold growth. If we can address the water before the mold growth barges from their drain system in there, that'd be ideal. So, I don't know how this winter is going to be but last winter with the heavy amount of moisture content, we ended up doing a lot more crawl space drainage systems this year than we have in the past and one of the biggest things on those drainage systems is making sure they're done properly. There is a lot of guys in the valley. I've seen some drainage systems that were sub per that will only work in theory. The biggest thing on those if you've got somebody coming in and they're installing the drainage system and they're using a five gallon Home Depo or a Lowe’s bucket as their pump tank, it's probably not the most professional system.

Dave Burnett:                    You want something a little better than just a plastic bucket working there.

Darius Elison:                     Unfortunately, in the valley that is the standard right now though I think the two major companies that do the majority of these, that's what they're using unfortunately.

Thom Dallman:                  What size of a fill space should it be?

Darius Elison:                     Well, the bucket should be at least 18 inches deep and then the width of the bucket is determined by the pump size. So, with the five gallon bucket, summer pumps, the arm, the float arm that activates the pump actually rubs up against the bucket.

Dave Burnett:                    Okay.

Darius Elison:                     And then if I-

Dave Burnett:                    [crosstalk 00:06:25] then that needs to be-

Darius Elison:                     Absolutely. And then by having perforations in the bucket you're attracting dirt and silk to come in there and plug up that summer pump.

Dave Burnett:                    Is a lot of the water that comes in from your outside water, from gutters and the house not being properly ... You know.

Darius Elison:                     I would say about half the time it is coming from the gutters or improper drainage. What we see is gutters are just coming down right down the side of the house and then they go into a flower bed and we put up a nice beautiful curb between the grass and the flower bed and that retains all the water. We need to have a negative slope away from the house for at least the first five feet.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly.

Darius Elison:                     That's the code.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah. And a lot of these houses especially newer constructions, we've talked about that before how the ground kind of settles around the house just naturally after being built and stuff like that. So, it's definitely something that you should be watching for in your home.

Dave Burnett:                    Other things we should watch out for, things we should be looking for when it comes to our homes?

Darius Elison:                     Well, no. As a result, to mold the biggest thing that we've being seeing is just a lot of scare tactics and red flags. If somebody approaches mold as being toxic mold or black mold, those are scientific terms. Black is a color.

Dave Burnett:                    You hear that term though, you hear black mold.

Thom Dallman:                  You hear it all the time.

Darius Elison:                     Yeah. Black is just a color. Mold is bold, mold is black. That does not mean it's more dangerous than any other mold out there. I get more scared when I see rainbow colored mold because I say, "What is that? I see black mold all the time." One of the big things that we see is there're companies that do the wrong testing. That's a huge red flag. If a company's coming in there and they're doing their own testing, that means that they can alter the samples to make it look like the mold is more prevalent than it is and then after the remediation more importantly is that they have the ability to test and have it cleared even though it might not be. So, in our industry, the company that does the remediation does not do the testing. If your company is saying they do the testing, that is a huge red flag and there are a lot of companies that do that. It should be an air quality test done by usually MPI. There's a lot of other companies that do it as well but they need to come and do an actual air testing. But what happens is a lot of other companies are just taking swabs samples to show that the mold is gone and they're charging those and all they are just off the shelf Lowe's and Home Depo. Sometimes they get a little more sophisticated getting online but they're taking these $20 tests that just simply tell you whether you have mold or not and they're charging $200 a sample and they're worthless.

Dave Burnett:                    That's a pretty good mark up.

Darius Elison:                     It's a great mark up but that's a big red flag and then the other thing is anytime somebody comes out there to take a look at mold then they can tell you what type it is by looking at it, that's another big red flag. There's no features of mold that are going to tell you exactly what type it is.

Thom Dallman:                  Interesting. I can talk about that before-

Dave Burnett:                    So let's see, I've had my home tested, we have mold in it. In 60 seconds or so, what do you do when you're coming to fix that?

Darius Elison:                     The first thing we do is we get rid of the mold source, or the moisture source that's causing the mold. That's the number one thing that we should be looking at. Making sure whatever the source of the moisture is is gone because without a moisture source, there will be no more mold, no more mold will grow back or anything like that. So, we want to get rid of the moisture source. We want to definitely encapsulate that mold in sort of a containment and if it's more than 10 square feet we set up a proper containment where we actually have negative pressure inside of that containment. We filter it through a [inaudible 00:10:14]. Another thing that we see from companies that don't have proper certification in [inaudible 00:10:21], is when they set up this containments, they put ... You're trading negative pressure inside the containment, so you have to have some sort of make up air somewhere. That make up air should be filtered. With the directional filters there is no chance of it getting back into the home. A lot of times we go in, and we see just [inaudible 00:10:39] cutting in the plastic, and the plastic just simply taped to the walls. That's not how it should look. It should be pressure fit containment with 2' * 4's. It should look clean, it should look ... You just know what to look for. If all they got is plastic hanging off the wall and some duct tape holding it there, and then a couple of slits in the plastic and the fan inside pulling air out that's a bad thing. Most people know what looks right and what doesn't look right and if it looks unprofessional, it probably is.

Dave Burnett:                    So the bottom line I am taking out of this is if you do have mold in your home it's not a death sentence for the house?

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly

Darius Elison:                     It not. The most important thing is just remember to call professionals. A lot of people will try to do it themselves with bleach or with [inaudible 00:11:27]. Problem is when you're trying to clean the mold is most people protect themselves and they wear a respirator, but they don't think about the fact that most of the mold contamination is actually getting into your eyes because they're moist and that it attracts to it. So, wearing a respirator doesn't protect your eyes at all. That's why our guys come in their full suit, full face respirators.

Dave Burnett:                    Very good. All right. Trying to help you take care of your home. That's an important thing to do and especially if you're selling it, that's the kind of thing that [inaudible 00:11:56] in that inspection as well.

Thom Dallman:                  Exactly. Make sure that you're as earlier said reaching out to the professionals to help you make your home safe and sound for your family and all that.

Dave Burnett:                    Any contact can be found on the website.

Thom Dallman:                  Yeah. Go to coregrouprealty.com and go to the service providers page and you'll see our list of providers including One Call Restoration.

Dave Burnett:                    Excellent. All right. We'll continue on the other side. This is the Idaho Real Estate Buzz being brought to you by Diversified Mortgage and by Core Group Realty. Call today, 2089337777. Find out why they say, "You get more, with Core."


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