Tenants’ Rights: What to Know About Mold

In this second of our series on tenants’ rights, we dive into the topic of mold in your rented or leased space. (Missed our first post in the series on tenants’ rights? Check out what to know about wind and water damage. As discussed, a tenant is entitled to certain rights including being provided a safe and livable home or property. In states like Florida, moisture, humidity, and climate change create a recipe for mold disaster.

As we’ve heard from many of the tenants we represent, the question after finding mold in their property then becomes, who’s responsible for taking care of mold remediation? But before we get to that, let’s back up and first discuss what mold is and why it can be so problematic in our livable spaces.

What to know about mold when you’re renting

Mold is a very common fungi found nearly everywhere, though the more moisture, the better. And mold is important when it’s working in its natural environment. Why? It plays the tough job of breaking down dead organic matter like leaves and trees. But mold in your home? That can be downright problematic for two major reasons.

First, mold can pose a significant threat to your health. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, people who are sensitive to molds can experience coughing, wheezing, nasal and throat irritation, and more. In severe cases, people can even suffer from serious life-threatening lung infections when exposed to mold.

Secondly, mold also can cause major property damage if not treated early. Mold thrives in moist places, like the bathrooms or along baseboards or paneling, though mold can grow nearly everywhere.

Who is responsible for mold remediation when you’re renting?

If you find mold in your rented or leased property, it is the responsibility of your landlord to take care of any repairs and mold remediation.

While mold in and of itself can be problematic and requires immediate remediation, equally important to address is the root cause of the water problem. Was it a one-time flooding event that created a water-laden environment or was it a result of a persistent leak? Because moisture is mold’s best friend, effectively managing moisture and water problems is imperative to controlling mold.

If you’re concerned about mold in your rental property, you’re entitled to your tenant rights. Call us at Silverberg | Brito, PLLC to discuss your situation and determine the best course of action for handling mold in your rented or leased property.