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I've read this through a couple times this morning, and the initial thought is I like it. I've recently written a document countering one of the local mold "remediators" proposal and work; they essentially ripped off one of my customers for $22,000 worth of "remediation" without correcting the water leaks that caused the problem in the first place. This is timely for me.

The construction trades are full of proposals that are thinly veiled sales brochures.

I'm gonna go over this again. Good work.

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Originally posted by apinkingston

I've written an article criticizing a mold remediation contract and I humbly submit it to you for your review.

http://www.octoberhome.com/articles/mrs ... tract.html

I have Michael's permission to post this and I've chosen "The Written Word" because this article has more to do with language than anything else.

Arlene

It could use a quick copy edit but I think that it's very good. I enjoyed reading it and I learned a few things.

You might consider getting rid of the ads for mold remediation companies though. They seem peculiarly out of place given the subject matter.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Well done, Arlene. Very informative.

I've found that what Kurt described is typically what happens when homeowners hire remediation companies. The mitigators (allegedly . . . ) get rid of most of the mold, but they don't have the expertise to discover what caused the mold to flourish in the first place, i.e. damp/wet conditions somewhere in the house. The end result is that the mold begins to reproduce and before long, it's at the same level it was pre-mitigation.

People ask me all the time if I'll make certain their house is mold free. I offer up a verbal disclaimer, then explain that more important than identifying mold, is locating the source of dampness that engendered the mold in the first place.

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Originally posted by Jim Katen

It could use a quick copy edit - Jim Katen, Oregon

That's for darn sure. I worked hours and hours on this stupid paper. It kept getting worse. I decided to post it, get responses and peer review and get away from it for a week or so. Its direction is weak. I have to work on that. I guess I have to definitively decide what I want to say and to whom.

My bigest problem was that there was so much to say about the document and its abuse of language.

Arlene

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Originally posted by apinkingston

Originally posted by Jim Katen

It could use a quick copy edit - Jim Katen, Oregon

That's for darn sure. I worked hours and hours on this stupid paper. It kept getting worse. I decided to post it, get responses and peer review and get away from it for a week or so. Its direction is weak. I have to work on that. I guess I have to definitively decide what I want to say and to whom.

When I have to do that, I create an outline format to structure my ideas. It really helps to give the piece direction and form.

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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OK, read it through several times.

1) Get rid of the mold ads. Major distraction.

2) All the right info scattered in several directions. Outline. I'm kinda classic oriented, so I'd be working at it as an intro, body, and conclusion orientation.

Tell 'em what you're gonna tell 'em.

Tell 'em in concise chunks.

Tell 'em what you told them.

I've found this effective (boring, but effective) because most of the folks I talk to about this stuff have been blathered to death by popular news media and mold remediator bullshift.

If there's a logistical (there is!), set the dialog up in a timeline so folks get the idea there's first things first. Logistics. Folks need to be walked through this stuff; they don't get it otherwise.

I still like the premise. I review a lot of proposals for customers. One of my hot buttons is the "sales pitch" proposal, where there's more sales than specifications. Most folks don't have any idea what a "real" proposal is. Once they're alerted and get the idea, they can start to filter this stuff.

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