There is mold under the kitchen tiles in our rental home. The owner has made several attempts to stop the numerous leaks on the property but the water continues to cause problems. Also mosquitoes are now a problem. How long do we have to live like this. Is there a way to document this besides at our expense?Can we move and get out of our contract? Can you help a direction to turn to for help? Is there a way to document this besides at our expense?
Until the moisture is removed or controlled, mold will always return. I have attached a web page that has a couple of checklists for determining the source of the moisture (See the Home Inspection Checklist). http://extension.oregonstate.edu/fch/healthy-homes/mold-indoor-air-quality Also try http://eden.lsu.edu/topics/humanhealth/Mold/Pages/default.aspx This includes another good checklist for sources. EPA doesn't recommend testing- they feel all molds should be treated the same- dry it out, clean it up, keep it dry and protect yourself and others in the home during the clean-up as much as possible. http://www.epa.gov/mold/index.html There are too many variables in individuals responses to mold. Unfortunately, a rental owner is not mandated to eliminate all mold. There is no agency that inspects and then assigns responsibility. A negotiation between tenant and landlord is necessary. It is in the best interest of the landlord to keep the home mold-free as much as possible to protect the integrity and value of the building. We hope they are also concerned about the health of their tenants. There are some things you can do to keep the moisture down- see the links above for that information as well. Have you considered a dehumidifier? They can help dry the air while you work on a more permanent solution, or may be necessary long term if there is baseboard heat that doesn't circulate well or dry the air and poorly working (or unused) bathroom and kitchen fans. The other part of your question regarding getting out of your lease would have to be addressed by someone familiar with landlord/tenant laws. The Center for NonProfit Legal Services, Inc. provides civil legal assistance to low income and elder residents of Jackson County who are experiencing problems in housing, public welfare, family dissolution, employment, immigration or other major life situations that might require legal assistance. They can be reached at 541-779-7292. Or, you can log on to www.cnpls.org. I hope this helps. Good luck. Jeanne