Managing Mould

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Managing Mould

Mould is considered to be ‘the new generation of asbestos’.   

 

Good and bad species of mould (or fungi), are mostly ubiquitous in the biosphere and can be found virtually everywhere.  However, some mould which appears in our homes can produce toxic compounds called mycotoxins.   

 

These mycotoxins are responsible for a myriad of health implications such as systemic fungal infections, rhinitis, nasal congestion, coughs, sore throats, fever, headache, compromised immune system, asthma, wheezing, pneumonia, mood disturbances, chronic fatigue, skin and eye irritations, digestive issues, athletes foot, tinea, ringworm, candida, yeast infections, anaphylactic reactions, cancer and even death.   

 

Toxic mould can be visible, or it could be hidden behind walls or in carpet underlays.   The most common causes of mould include water leaks, flooding, thick foliage and gardens close to the home, high interior humidity and lack of ventilation.  

 

It is important for tenants to ensure bathrooms are well ventilated by opening windows or using exhaust fans, to clean any mould quickly before it becomes severe, and report any worrying mould promptly.  

 

Persistent mould, eg on a ceiling, needs to be investigated and dealt with quickly as it could be due to a structural issue.  Your property manager will be able to advise you and organise for a qualified practitioner to inspect, confirm the species of mould, and determine the cause. 

 

To reduce the risk of mould appearing in your rental property, consider actioning the following tips: 

  • Install exhaust fans in prone areas such as bathrooms, kitchen and laundry; 
  • Install security screens so windows and doors can be kept open to allow all-day-long air circulation; 
  • Ensure gutters are clear and drainage is adequate; 
  • Keep exterior property areas free of mould – external walls, eaves, gutters; 
  • Trim or cut back garden foliage to ensure good sunlight and air-flow into the house; 
  • Ensure air-conditioners are serviced regularly; 
  • Ensure tenants are regularly opening curtains, blinds, windows and doors. 

 

The RTRA Act that governs the landlord/tenant relationship does not make specific reference to mould, but the Act is specific in that the landlord must keep the rental premises in a reasonable state of repair, meet building, health and safety requirements, and ensure repairs are undertaken in a reasonable period of time.   Landlords could be responsible for the cleaning of any mould that is a result of problems with the property. 

 

To deal with any mould problems thoroughly and respectfully, all tenancy parties should communicate and work together.  

Beyond Property Management are Brisbane’s property management specialists, delivering a best-practice property management service.   Call Heather Jopson on 07 3188 7651 or send her an email at heather@beyondpm.com.au for more information about their property management services. 

 

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