Home renters are always looking for the best property and how well a home has been maintained counts towards the home’s ultimate value on the rental property market. It is safe to say that no potential renter is going to be happy with a home with mold. For this reason, property managers need to be extra vigilant to guarantee that the homes within their listings do not have or note hidden mold problems or issues.
Property managers should assess every home for indoor mold problems as part of the review process of listing a home for the rental market to consumers and renters. Of course property managers already have this in check, but there are other health hazards associated with mold that they may not have considered. If mold has been found in a rental unit and the mold is not remediated quickly, the renters may be exposed to mold for a certain length of time. If that individual is elderly or very young, the person may experience a health issue that could lead to a disease as a result of exposure to a health hazard in the home. The property manager may incur responsibility or liability for not managing the mold issue, and in that case it will be more of an issue for everyone concerned.
The prevalence of indoor mold problems has increased in the past few years. In some cities across the country, whole regions are being hit with issues regarding mold in the homes. Renters are cautious about renting apartments with the incidence of mold, mildew or dampness issues in the walls, ceilings or floors. Renters are making more and more claims against landlords in the U.S. to clean up moldy rental units, which can make it difficult for the rental owners to get property insurance on these rental properties.
There are over 1,000 different categories of mold present in the United States. Fortunately, less than twenty-five molds are considered hazardous to human health. Determining which molds are hazardous can take time, because some molds have more than one strain, when one strain can be harmless and another hazardous.
Molds that are toxic to humans can release mold spores that have poisonous allergens and other organic compounds that have been known to be the cause of disease in humans. Scientists have yet to agree on exactly what components define hazardous mold, because there are many factors that determine if a mold is hazardous or not. But it is clear that dangerous mold is associated with real heath issues, in human populations who are exposed to it.
The medical issues most closely related to medical problems in humans include:
• Bloody nose
• Hay fever symptoms
• Skin and throat irritation
• Respiratory issues
• Some neurological issues including memory loss or cancers
The CDC states that the most common type of mold found in rental properties and residential home rentals are:
• Stachybotrus charum (black mold)
The CDC only cites a possible relationship between these molds, but their effect on some individuals may be severe, such as with people who have compromised immune systems, or with infants and the elderly.
As a property manager, it is your duty to keep the rental properties that you manage safe for renters at all times. When you see mold, just give us a call. Even if you have the feeling that mold may be in a home that you manage for renters, or have had what you think is an unsubstantiated complaint of water leaking or mold as a possibility, it is better to be safe, just call us to come in and review the property for you. We are able to offer you peace of mind, that you will be able to pass on to your renters, and that is a win-win for everyone. We are only a phone call away, and we are here 24/7. Give us a call today for a mold free rental tomorrow.