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For New South Wales Tenants and Landlords

  Extract from a recent Eastern Area Tenants Service (EATS) newsletter.

Source: Eastern Area Tenants Service (EATS)

Contrary to popular belief, mould is not always caused by the tenant not opening up with windows to ventilate their premises. Sometimes mould can be caused by rising damp or a variety of other reasons out of the tenants control.

So, what should you do if you have a mould problem??

Firstly contact your landlord in writing requesting that they come and repair the mould affected area (through either cleaning it with appropriate mould killer or if necessary repainting the affected areas after a mould sealant has been used). You should always give a deadline for these repairs to be carried out, such as two week and make sure you KEEP A COPY OF YOUR LETTER requesting the landlord to do the repairs.

If the landlord still refuses to repair the mould problem, then you have the right to have the matter heard in the Consumer, trader and Tenancy Tribunal where the Member can make an order forcing the landlord to do something about the mould and perhaps even give you compensation for putting up with it.

The landlord cannot argue that the only reason that the mould is there is because you do not open your windows or you have caused it by not being “clean” enough. If there is mould in the premises and it has appeared through no fault of your own, then it is the landlordsʼ responsibility to get rid of it!

  Extract from SMH Body & Soul

Wet weather is causing a spread of mould that is damaging to our health.

The list of infections, symptoms and conditions Robyn Bell, her partner Mathew Willmore and even their two cats suffered during the three years they lived in a mould-infested Brisbane home reads like the index of a medical journal.

Sinus, skin and respiratory infections, yeast infections, headaches, aching joints, asthma, fatigue, loss of libido, depression and anxiety were some of the problems they suffered. Their cats suffered fungal infections and constant vomiting.

“That house was killing us,” Bell says. “It just took a long time for us to connect the dots about why we were so sick all the time.”

She and Willmore have since moved out – “almost immediately we felt better” – but without most of their belongings, which they have locked up in containers because they were unable to control the mould.

“Mould has tainted everything in our lives,” she says. “Along with our health, many of our belongings, our keepsakes that were sacred to us, have been or will need to be destroyed.

“Mould is toxic, dangerous and consumes everything around it. Unless you treat the source and kill it, it will take hold of your life.”

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