Inspector Paul

ERMI & ARMI Relative Moldiness Index Testing

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What is the ERMI?

  • The ERMI is an acronym for EPA Relative Moldiness Index.
  • It was developed by scientists at the USEPA to provide a straightforward, objective, and standardized way to obtain results for indoor air quality investigations.
  • The EPA is developing an ERMI ranking system based on dust samples collected from homes across the United States.
  • The ERMI will help predict the moldiness of homes. Homes with high ERMI values have a greater chance of having a mold problem then homes with a low ERMI.
  • 36 different fungi make up the ERMI and are designated as Group I (those found in atypical, water damaged homes) and Group II (those commonly found in all homes):

Group I

Stachybotrys chartarum, Chaetomium globosum, Cladosporium sphaerospermum, Aspergillus versicolor, Eurotium (A.) amstalodami, Penicillium variabile, Aspergillus flavus,  Aspergillus restrictus, Penicillium crustosum, Aspergillus niger, Aspergillus sclerotiorum, Penicillium purpurogenum, Aspergillus fumigatus, Penicillium corylophilum, Aureobasidium pullulans, Aspergillus ochraceus, Penicillium brevicompactum, Paecilomyces variotii, Aspergillus sydowii, Penicillium spinulosum, Wallemia sebi, Aspergillus unguis, Scopulariopsis brevicaulis, Scopulariopsis chartarum, Aspergillus penicillioides, Trichoderma viride

Group II

Acremonium strictum, Alternaria alternata, Aspergillus ustus, Cladosporium cladosporioides v1, Cladosporium cladosporioides v2, Cladosporium herbarum, Epicoccum nigrum, Mucor & Rhizopus group, Penicillium chrysogenum, Rhizopus stolonifer

What is MSQPCR?

         MSQPCR is an acronym for Mold Specific Quantitative Polymerase Chain Reaction.

         The ERMI value is determined using the MSQPCR method in the lab.

         It was developed by scientists at the USEPA to detect and quantify fungi associated with indoor air quality problems.

         It’s a FAST, ACCURATE, and SENSITIVE DNA-based analytical method for identifying and quantifying molds to the species level.

         The method looks for the presence of DNA sequences that are unique to a particular mold species. 

Comparison of MSQPCR analysis to spore trap and culture analysis.



Spore Traps




Results available in 24 hrs or sooner.

6-10 days

Results available in 24 hrs or sooner.


Genus level of all identifiable mold spores (no ID of hyphae) 

Genus and/or species level of viable spore-producing molds (no ID of hyphae) 

Genus and species level of client selected molds



Colony Forming Units







Cannot be determined

Can be determined

Cannot be determined

Sampling Time

Limited due to possibility of overloading sample

Limited due to possibility of overloading sample

No restrictions


       *In MSQPCR, all fungal cells contain DNA including spores and hyphae.


What type of report will I get from the lab and how do I interpret it? (See ERMI report below.)

  • Your customized report will identify how many of the 36 molds were found that make up the ERMI and the quantity of each.
  • The report will also calculate the ERMI value and reports whether the value falls within EPA’s Level 1, 2, 3, or 4 designations. These levels were determined from the EPA’s preliminary research and will be refined further as new research is performed. An ERMI result in Level 1 or Level 2 indicates that there is a low likelihood that the building has a mold contamination problem. An ERMI result in Level 3 indicates a moderate likelihood and a Level 4 indicates a high likelihood of a mold problem. An appropriate, more in-depth follow up assessment and determination of the contamination can now take place in Level 3 and 4 buildings.

Sample ERMI Environmental Relative Moldiness Index Report


Pricing for ERMI Testing:

ERMI Test:          Fee:                      

24 Hour TAT       $860.00               

48 Hour TAT       $650.00               

72 Hour TAT       $ 595.00              

TAT = Turn Around Time in business days/hours from when the lab receives the sample.

Call: Paul King

704-467-7328 (INSPECT)

1820 Sunnyside Ave. Charlotte, NC 28204

& 201 Tom Hall St. #236 Fort Mill, SC 29715


Professional, detailed, thorough home inspections in Charlotte, Pineville, Matthews, Mint Hill, Weddington, Huntersville, Lake Norman, Waxhaw, Monroe, and Marvin, North Carolina as well as Rock Hill, Fort Mill, Tega Cay, Lake Wylie, Indian Land, York, Clover, and Lancaster, South Carolina.

Copyright 2003-2008 King Construction, Inc. dba Inspector Paul