Local tenant concerned over black mold; tips from officials

JOPLIN, Mo. – A Joplin man expresses frustration, saying his property manager won’t deal with a black mold issue.

Alex Williams said the maintenance painted over the mold. According to the Joplin Health Department, paint applied over moldy surfaces is likely to peel.

Williams stated that he was only given three options — break the lease and move out — move into another building with increased rent– or move into another apartment in the same building.

Williams has to pay out of pocket for moving expenses and was told he will not be getting his deposit back nor will he get any medical expense help if it is related to the mold.

Alex and his girlfriend said there was a water leak above their apartment that was not taken care of.

According to the Joplin health department, mold is caused by molds that are usually not a problem indoors, unless mold spores land on a wet or damp spot and begin growing. Molds have the potential to cause health problems.

http://www.joplinmo.org/DocumentCenter/View/277/moldguide?bidId=

Alex Williams and his girlfriend set up a GoFundMe to help replace damaged items and hire a lawyer.

Tips to Dealing with Mold

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services offers tips for dealing with mold in a rental.

Mold and Rental Situations

  1. Consult the Missouri Landlord Tenant Law to understand your rights.
  2. Fix the problem if possible. See the above Tips and Techniques for Mold Cleanup for recommendations.
  3. If the problem is something that has to be fixed by the landlord, send a letter in writing to your landlord describing the nature of your complaint and keep a copy of the letter. Mo Health states if the rental is managed by an agency such as Housing and Urban Development or the Rural Housing Administration, be sure to contact that agency. If your doctor made specific recommendations regarding your living environment, be sure to include those statements.
  4. If the landlord refuses to address the issue, you may find some assistance through local city hall or housing authority regarding local building codes, nuisance ordinances, or tenant codes. The codes will vary across Missouri from city to city and county to county. The codes do not address mold or the health effects from mold. You should discuss the code violations that exist and promote mold ggrowth, such as: faulty plumbing, construction and ventilation issues, leaky roofs, growndwater infiltration due to improper site placement, improper lumber selection, etc.
  5. If no assistance is available locally you may consider contacting an attorney.
  6. In some situations, moving may be the final option to protect the health of you and your family.
  7. Consult with an attorney to consider placing language in your next rental contract guaranteeing the quality of your indoor environment.

You can find more tips to deal with mold from Missouri Health here.

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