Mold Hysteria!

There is a lot of hysteria about mold and I believe most of it is unfounded. Mold that causes reactions in some people does indeed exist. However most mold is totally harmless and is no danger. Sure it’s a bit gross, but gross and dangerous are two different things.

Basement bathrooms are a great environment for mold. The key is to A) take short showers as a general rule when you can B) always open the door wide and air out the bathroom for a full half hour or longer after bathing C) clean the walls and ceiling above the tub frequently and regularly—three or four times a month—with a biocide like Lysol or diluted bleach.

I take seriously any report or concern about mold. That said, despite the approximately 20 or so times since I’ve been doing this work when tenants have brought up a concern about mold, every single time except once there was no problem, rather the issue and solution was simply a need to step up houskeeping and cleaning practices. The time it wasn’t a housekeeping issue was when a hose spigot line burst in a wall. The tenant didn’t notice the dampness for a while because furniture blocked it. We put in a deeper shut off for the hose spigot to avoid future flooding and we remediated the drywall and etc. properly.

Here’s an excerpt from an email I sent to a tenant recently who had a concern about mold. I will follow up with her as needed after I get more info from her.

“It’s good to be concerned for your health. So let’s investigate together so we can know 100% whether it’s ordinary, common, safe mold.

“Please tell me what you’ve done so far, and how frequently you’ve done it, to address the mold. Also please describe what happened if/when anyone had a reaction to the mold and how you know it was the mold versus some other influence.

“Please “reply to all” so all roommates are in the loop. I will come in person to see it if needed after I hear the answers to the query in the paragraph above. I ask that AT LEAST two of the roommates on the lease be in attendance. I can be very flexible on when, so you tell me when is good for you and most likely I can make it happen.”