Discovering mold in your home or apartment is never fun for anyone involved. Depending on the type of mold, tenants can face serious health risks. Mold requires immediate remediation, which means it can be an unexpected expense for landlords. If you believe there is mold growing in your rental home or apartment, your first thought might be to flee. However, there are certain steps you must follow rather than running in search of a new rental.
Testing for Mold
As soon as you notice signs of mold growth, you should contact your landlord. The sooner you notify the landlord, the better. Your landlord will need to rectify the situation before it gets worse. Mold consists of microscopic fungi that often grows when moist conditions exist. For instance, a leaky roof or pipe can create the perfect scenario for mold growth.
If left untreated, mold can grow rapidly and cover a large area. There are different kinds of mold, so mold testing may be required for proper treatment. The color of the mold may include green, black, grey, brown, and white. It is important to test for the presence of toxic mold for the safety of you and any other residents residing in the rental home or apartment.
Do Not Move Out
Just because your rental has mold does not mean you can break your lease and move out. If you have a signed lease, your landlord can sue you for the remainder of your lease. You are also not allowed to withhold rent from your landlord. Instead, there are steps the landlord must take, so it is important that you know your rights.
If the mold proves toxic and dangerous to your health, the landlord may have to place you in either a hotel or another habitable environment. The landlord will have to use mold remediation services to correct the situation in a fair amount of time. Make sure you keep in touch with your landlord and document all communication.
For your benefit, follow-up with emails and texts so you have proof of all contact. Also, save records of phone calls. If you make a call to your landlord, make sure you also repeat anything discussed in a certified written letter, and make a copy for yourself, or send it in an email or text. You cannot record phone calls, so it is important that you maintain verifiable proof that you are working with the landlord to ensure the proper removal of mold from your rental.