Sometimes it's difficult to tell if you need mold remediation, or just a little elbow grease to solve your problem. I'll try to lay out some simple guidelines I've run throughout my research. It's important to remember that black mold is especially hazardous to human health and should always be treated cautiously. First thing you need to determine is just how extensive the damage is, and to be sure the water source which initially caused the infestation has been found and removed.
The materials affected are also critical. Wood, drywall, laminates, all can be infested to some degree. Wood, by far, is the most intolerable to damage and most difficult to cleanse. Keep that in mind when you're examining your particular situation. The problem with wood is that is just soaks up water like a sponge. Water means mold, it's hard to attack an existing infestation in wood without specialized tools, which may require the proper mold remediation and an expert mold inspector's fee to boot. Do not panic yet! Sometimes you can clean wood yourself; It all depends on the area that has been infected.
The general rule of thumb with mold remediation is sixteen square feet, or four by four foot square – about one half of a piece of standard plywood or drywall. I know, you'd think a larger area would be necessary before a pro is needed but this black mold is particularly insidious, and virulent. When you clean mold you also stir up mold spores, which in turn can cause additional areas to become damaged or re-infestation could easily occur. If the damage is under this threshold there's a god change you do not require a professionally conducted remediation operation to take place. If the area is larger there is still a slim ray of hope you can avoid the charges a pro will incur. If the area is wood, forget it, but if it's drywall some specialized products may be able to help you. Even then the area still should be less than thirty two square feet (that's one sheet of plywood) or you'll still need a pro.
Trust me, you do not want o be battling the same areas of mold, those products are not cheap either. If the area is small, go for it. Get the cleansers and be sure you follow all the directions, especially in regards to ventilation … I learned that one the hard way hahahaha. Any, if the area is larger, do not even waste your time and money – just pay for the mold remediation; It'll be cheaper in the long run. Sometimes you'll be paying for it, it's just a question of how much time and money you waste first, and how much you allow the problem (and then bill) to grow. Do the smart thing go for the professional option first, that is of course if the infestation requires it. Also be aware of your own limitations.