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Mould, and your responsibility.

ByJames Clark

Household mould is becoming a major issue for all Queenslanders, especially since the flood disaster, as our warm and muggy climate loves to breed it. When dealt with quickly and correctly mould can be an uneventful occurrence, however, if not managed it can lead to health issues and costly damage to property.

An issue that concerns many of Ray White Nundah’s owners and tenants is the management and responsibility of mould once it has been discovered.

Well it all depends on where the mould is found and what caused it.

Firstly, what is mould? Dictionary definition states that mould is:

1. A coating or discoloration caused by various saprotrophic fungi that develop in a damp atmosphere on the surface of stored food, fabrics, wallpaper etc and

2. Any fungi that causes this growth.

Mould grows best in damp and poorly ventilated areas with some nice organic matter to feed on. And it doesn’t take very much moisture to trigger it. Therefore the best way to treat mould is not to remove the mould itself but to eliminate the source of the moisture.

Mould can affect our health in the following ways: nasal congestion, sneezing, cough, wheeze, respiratory infections and worsen asthma and allergic conditions. And these issues can become quite severe if left untreated. Therefore it is extremely important not to let mould go unchecked in your home.

So how do we get rid of mould when we find it?

Experts suggest various vinegar, oil of cloves, bi-carb soda and water solutions (or antibacterial sprays and wipes) and advise against bleach as it doesn’t kill the mould, it merely bleaches the colour out. Many remedies can be found online to assist you. But managing mould once it’s found is only part of the solution. The main thing to do is eliminate the source of moisture so that the mould can’t grow back.

At Ray White Nundah we are often asked “So what is the best way to prevent moisture and therefore mould growth?”

There are various suggestions but tackling the humidity is the real area where you can be successful and the use of open windows, air conditioners and dehumidifiers to get the air flowing and prevent moisture build up are recommended.

So where does the responsibility for getting rid of mould lie?

The answer, according to the Residential Tenancies Authority of QLD is the lessor, or the tenant, depending on the situation. The RTA website confirms that ‘if the mould appears as a result of fair wear and tear, or a result of a property maintenance issue such as a roof leak, it is the lessor’s responsibility to have it cleaned. It is always up to the lessor to ensure the premises are maintained and kept in good repair.

However, if the tenant causes the mould, for example by not ventilating a bathroom using an extractor fan or opening a window, it may be the tenant’s responsibility to clean up the mould.’

The solution therefore needs to be come to by mutual agreement and then mould can be eradicated simply and effectively without causing additional issues.

RTA Information source: https://www.rta.qld.gov.au/Resources/Resources-for-lessors-agents-and-managers/Open-House-lessor-agents-newsletter/December-2011-January-2012/Mould-who-is-responsible

Need help?  Please call us.

Clark Brothers Ray White Nundah

Serving Your Community

raywhitenundah.com.au

+61 7 3266 2055

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