If you have identified a mold problem in your home, your mind is probably racing with questions. How expensive is this going to be to fix? Is my family at risk? What can I do to stop the mold from spreading? Among all of these questions, one will probably keep working its way to the forefront: how did this happen?

Mold in a house can be a major issue, so it's easy to feel as if you could have done something differently, or somehow prevented it from taking hold. While mold can sometimes be the result of neglect, in truth there are many reasons why mold might have taken up residence in your home. Understanding how and why mold spreads is an important part of understanding how you can prevent it from returning in the future. This is especially vital if you hire mold removal services, since you will ideally not want to have to call them back for another visit.

The Basic Ingredients of a Mold Infestation

The key ingredients that mold needs in order to grow are moisture, an organic substrate to grow on and feed off of, temperatures that aren't too cold, and an environment that is suitably dark. If mold spores are present, little else is necessary to start a colony of mold on its way. Of those conditions, the one that will most likely lead directly to a mold infestation is excess moisture. Moisture is also the one factor of mold growth that you can most easily control.

Hidden Leaks

One of the most common causes of sudden mold growth in a home is a hidden water leak. Since large leaks would likely cause other, more noticeable damage, these leaks are often small and go unaddressed for long periods of time. In addition to causing water damage to your home, these leaks create a locally damp environment that is ideal for mold growth. If mold is appearing in areas of your home that are not humid or prone to moisture, then a leak hidden behind walls or below the floor is almost certainly the culprit.

Condensation and Wet Areas

Another common source of moisture in the home is condensation in bathrooms. If your bathroom is very humid and has poor ventilation, condensation will remain and potentially cause mold issues. Since mold takes time to grow -- usually a few days -- it requires areas that remain damp. Dehumidifiers and good ventilation can help to reduce humidity in wet areas, ultimately preventing rooms from staying damp long enough to encourage mold growth.

Large Water Leaks

Large water leaks can, of course, also present mold problems. Homeowners are often aware of the danger of mold growth after a basement floods or a major leak causes significant water buildup, but it is also important to be aware of the potential for mold growth after you have dealt with the problem. Water will often seep into difficult-to-notice or hard-to-reach areas, and if these areas are already somewhat cool and damp then it may foster the growth of mold. This mold may go unnoticed for a long time, but the presence of hidden mold spores makes it more likely that mold will take up residence elsewhere in the home as soon as conditions are right.

The Need for Comprehensive Mold Removal

Because there are so many potential ways for mold to grow in your home, it is important when hiring mold removal services to ensure that your entire house is thoroughly checked and cleaned. Professionals will know where to look for hidden mold damage so that small colonies do not remain to cause a health hazard for your family, or even lead to additional mold growth later on. Be sure that any mold removal services you hire take the time to advise you not only on clean-up, but also on what you can do to prevent future mold infestations. You can contact mold removal companies like DiBiaso's Cleaning and Restoration, Inc for more information.