Where to Report Mold Problems as a Tenant

Answer

Mold development in rental houses is subject to California’s stringent regulations, making it one of just a few states to do so. The presence of mould in your house or apartment may have a negative impact on the quality of the air within, which in turn can have a variety of adverse consequences on your health due to the spores that mould produces. There are a few different channels available for reporting mould development if you have reason to think it is occurring. After the mould has been reported and confirmed, the landlord will be able to take actions to eliminate the problem.

Dangers of Mold

Molds need surroundings that are warm and damp to grow, and they spread their spores via the air. When breathed, many mould spores are hazardous, and their exposure may lead to a wide variety of symptoms and diseases, ranging from rashes and allergies to serious respiratory issues. Mold may cause sickness in persons of all ages; however, the elderly and children have a significantly increased chance of being ill. There are moulds that are more dangerous than others, and the only person who can totally get rid of mould is a qualified removal professional. You have the right, as a tenant, to rent a home that does not include mould.

How to Detect Mold

Seeing mould is the most straightforward method of identifying its presence. Mold may present itself as yellow, brown, or even black spots or patches on surfaces. Although it is more common to see mould growing in high moisture places such as the bathroom, kitchen, or near windows, mould may grow everywhere, even in the walls, carpet, and floors. However, it is more probable to see mould growing in high moisture locations. In locations with a high concentration of mould, you could also detect a musty odour, in addition to an increase in respiratory difficulties. Before a tenant signs a lease agreement, a landlord in California is required by law to inform the renter about the existence of mould in the rental property.

Inform the Landlord

If you feel that mould is growing in your home, you should immediately call your landlord and follow up in writing. Specify the issue in great detail, and take photographs if that’s required. If mould is developing in a location that does not have a lot of moisture or even plumbing, such as in a closet, wall, or bedroom, the landlord should check for leaky pipes, roofing, or windows. For example, if mould is growing in a closet, the wall, or the bedroom, the landlord should check for mould. The landlord is responsible for not only fixing any issues that may be contributing to the formation of mould but also taking all necessary safety precautions while removing it. In the event that you get into a disagreement with someone, be sure to take notes of the discussion and save copies of any letters or emails you send or receive.

Other Options

Tenants have other options for where to report a mould concern in the event that their landlord refuses to address the issue. The local housing and code enforcement agency is able to conduct an inspection of the rental property and record any violations that are found. After that, the department will be able to exert pressure on the landlord to carry out the necessary repairs. In extreme cases, renters have the legal right to sue their landlords for any losses that were brought on by the landlord’s inactivity or neglect of their property. You may also go to your local housing and renters rights organisation for assistance on how to deal with the mould problem. For example, the “fix and deduct” remedy available in California or knowing when to call an attorney are both examples of this.