Your dwelling place should be a haven for refreshing your soul and mind after a tiresome office day. But things can suddenly change when you notice unusual developments in your apartment. Mold in the corner of your bathroom or anywhere in the house can cause concern. So what should you do if you find mold in your apartment?
The CDC recommends prompt mold removal because of the associated health risks such as wheezing, runny nose, and red eyes. Long-term exposure to mold spores can make you very sick if they settle in your lungs. Whether you think the mold is toxic or not, you should not panic.
First, notify the property owner of the mold’s location, appearance, and smell. You can even take a few pictures for a more precise illustration. Your landlord’s help will be useful in finding the right solution for the mold before it spreads to other parts of the room.
What to Do if Mold is in Your Apartment
If you spot mold in your apartment, you can follow these steps to eradicate the problem and avert potential issues that might arise:
1. Notify the property manager immediately
Assuming you keep your bathroom door and windows shut, tiny mold patches might soon appear in the bathroom corners. That said, such molds are easy to remove, and measures like white vinegar can clear them without further issues.
Large mold patches resulting from problems like leaking pipes might be difficult to control. In case the issue causing mold in your apartment is beyond your control, contact the landlord immediately to help find an appropriate solution. A quick response from the property owner is necessary to prevent further damage as mold usually points to water problems. Remember to send a follow-up email with photos of the mold attached to paint a clearer picture of the issue.
2. Confirm if it’s Mold
Moist conditions and warm temperatures favor mold growth and mildew, especially in dark places. While mold can develop anywhere in the house, some areas like leaky roofs and windows are more vulnerable.
Mold and mildew are fungi that require similar conditions to grow and might even resemble each other in appearance. However, mildew is a surface fungus commonly found on shower walls that is easy to clear. On the contrary, mold usually grows on moist organic matter like ceilings, paper, or wood and gets embedded into objects making it quite challenging to remove. Typically, mildew is yellow, gray, or white with a powdery or fluffy look, while mold is green or black with a slimy or fuzzy appearance. Notably, you cannot differentiate toxic mold from harmless varieties by appearance.
3. Determine the size of the Mold
Say you are facing a tiny patch of mold in a corner, you can get rid of it using white vinegar. Spraying white vinegar directly on the mold and letting it stand for at least one hour ensures it reaches the roots and kills the mold. Up to 80 percent of mold species are susceptible to white vinegar.
Although bleach is slightly corrosive, it does not eliminate mold as widely believed. On the contrary, it can enhance mold growth as it uses bleach as a source of food,
4. Identify the Cause
Work with the property owner to determine the cause of mold in your apartment. If ignored, mold can damage property and cause habitability issues with potential legal consequences. Therefore, your landlord will be as interested in finding the cause as you would.
For molds resulting from causes like roof leaks, your landlord is accountable and should foot the cost of the removal. However, if mold occurs due to your actions, including open taps flooding the kitchen, you could be responsible.
Mold can damage property and hurt your health. If the mold is causing health problems, prioritize visiting a doctor for proper evaluation and treatment. The elderly and very young are usually at greater risk of developing mold-related health issues than those with robust immune systems.
Confirm the state laws around mold infestation if you feel it is making the apartment uninhabitable. Depending on the cause and insurance policies, your renter’s insurance might compensate for the property damage caused by mold.
Once you determine the source of the mold in your apartment, you can discuss with your landlord for possible strategies, even if it means relocating until the issue is resolved.
5. Take Action After Finding Mold in Your Home
Besides property damage, mold exposure can cause different health problems, including asthma exacerbation. Therefore, you should find and remove it as soon as it occurs. Check for dark spots or discoloration around moist places like faucets, refrigerators, and windows where mold often grows.
Signs of water issues like damp surfaces, water stains on the ceiling, and bowed walls increase the likelihood of mold. A sniff test can help detect mold in hidden areas such as behind drywalls and below carpet pads.
We hope you found Found Mold In Your Apartment? Here’s What to Do useful. After your trip abroad, make sure you read The Effects of Mold on Your Home and Your Health to prepare for moving back!
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