Tenant threatening to sue over wants mold inspection

28 posts by 16 users

Medium 1399502465 avatar stevenhamilton Steven Hamilton II
Tax Accountant from Lake Villa, IL
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Medium 1448323426 avatar jasonscott J Scott
Investor / Business Guy from Ellicott City, MD
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Steven Hamilton II Verified

Tax Accountant from Lake Villa, Illinois

Dec 31 '12, 02:44 AM

I will second exactly what J Scott said. Cheap insurance and it makes sure everything is correct. I have seen walls covered in mold 24 hours after flooding. All it takes is the correct humidity, temperature and situation and mold will grow very quickly.


Medium hta logoSteven Hamilton II, Hamilton Tax and Accounting
E-Mail: [email protected]
Telephone: (224) 381-2660
Website: http://www.HamiltonTax.Net

Medium 1399662532 avatar joffreylong Joffrey Long
Real Estate Lender from Los Angeles , CA
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Joffrey Long

Real Estate Lender from Los Angeles , California

Dec 31 '12, 08:07 AM

I take this very seriously and have very strong opinions about it. However, Rick Bradd (previous post) summed it up very well. My advice about his advice is read every sentence in his post.

Joffrey Long

No company avatar medium 4cc34911d896e452829960fe1d9bdeb87fed8e15e9909152f514c9d6b143e72dJoffrey Long, Joffrey Long
Telephone: 818.366.5200
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Medium 1399604189 avatar ctgreenproperty Shawn M.
Investor from New Haven, CT
147 Posts
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Shawn M.

Investor from New Haven, Connecticut

Dec 31 '12, 08:33 AM

Is this a legal bedroom in the basement? does it have 2 legal means of egress? If not, this is a bigger problem than mold. If it is not a legal bedroom you should get them out of the basement ASAP. If something were to happen (fire, co2, etc) and you were renting out an illegal basement bedroom. You will be paying for a long time.

As for the mold, be a responsible landlord and get it tested and take the appropriate action after the report comes back. If you have toxic mold, it is in your best interest to get that corrected asap.

No avatar medium Doug S.
Chicago, IL
22 Posts
1 Vote
1 Award

Doug S.

from Chicago, Illinois

Dec 31 '12, 09:28 AM

Thanks all for your replies. Got some really good advice.

I agree, getting the mold test is the responsible thing to do. I'll swallow my pride this time and order a mold test.

Joffrey Long

Real Estate Lender from Los Angeles , California

Dec 31 '12, 09:38 AM
1 vote

One more quick thing: Be sure you instruct your mold inspector to give YOU the results, and not discuss them with the tenant.

You can present any information to the tenant yourself, but you are paying your inspector to give you a report, not fan the flames of drama with your tenant.


No company avatar medium 4cc34911d896e452829960fe1d9bdeb87fed8e15e9909152f514c9d6b143e72dJoffrey Long, Joffrey Long
Telephone: 818.366.5200
Website: http://www.hardmoneyexpert.net

Doug S.

from Chicago, Illinois

Jan 02 '13, 09:07 AM

Update: I spoke with the tenants and they agreed to pay for half of the mold test - this was their suggestion and I accepted their offer.

Unfortunately mold tests do not say whether a space is inhabitable or not....they only reveal what types of mold and their spore count.

However, there is more good news. As long as a room does not have any source of water coming in AND the humidity of the room is less than 50%, then mold cannot grow. This won't help with the mold air quality test, but it does ensure that the room should not have any future mold issues.

No avatar medium John Atkins
Raleigh, NC
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John Atkins

from Raleigh, North Carolina

Jan 13 '14, 10:57 PM

If the house has mold damage Raleigh NC, you can usually get it removed for fairly cheap. The mold testing does says how much mold, and of what kind. You can usually get it taken care of fairly fast. I would recommend have it taken care of before the tenant threatens legal. I don't think they have a case, but you can never be too sure.

Edited Jan 14 2014, 20:32 by Moderator: Ad link removed

Medium 1399738415 avatar marcia Marcia Maynard
Investor from Vancouver, WA
2301 Posts
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Marcia Maynard

Investor from Vancouver, Washington

Jan 14 '14, 12:34 AM

At the start of tenancy did you and the tenant sign a disclosure on mold and moisture hazards?

Did you give the tenant the EPA booklet "A Brief Guide To Mold, Moisture, and Your Home"? The booklet is an excellent resource and costs only 50 cents a copy. I give a copy to every tenant. A pdf of the booklet is available on line for free. Check it out. Also available in Spanish.

You have responsibility to provide a habitable dwelling. The tenant has responsibility to take action to prevent mold and mildew. Also to clean on a regular basis.

In Washington State, at the time the lease is signed, the landlord must provide the tenant with information provided or approved by the department of health about the health hazards associated with exposure to indoor mold. (see RCW §?59.18.060). That's law in Washington State. Any similar requirement in your state?

The Washington State Department of Health publishes a free two page form "Got Mold? Frequently Asked Questions About Mold" with signature/date lines for Landlord and Tenant. Quite informative and gives instructions on clean up. It's not state specific, so you may find it helpful.

All of our rental agreements include this Mold Warning Statement: "Mold may grow and exist in any structure where there is, or ever has been, a presence of moisture and a food source for mold to grow. Its presence may exist without the knowledge of the structure owner and may be concealed from the untrained observer. Some varieties of mold are toxic and may cause adverse reactions in certain individuals." With our signature, we attest that we have no knowledge of mold or moisture hazards in the unit. If there were, then we would have to disclose what we know.

You can be proactive from the get go and you must do what you can to prevent and remediate mold in your units. Good luck!

Marcia Maynard, Fischer Properties

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