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Renter Rights and Mold

A Concerning Issue

Mold and the health hazards associated with it have been a hot topic for discussion recently. There are news articles about homes, buildings, and even schools being shut down due to toxic mold infestation. With so much attention being brought to the matter, we field questions every day from concerned renters. In this article I am going to address four common topics that arise regularly.
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cleaning mold in the living room

Spring Clean: Tips to Reduce Mold & Improve Indoor Air Quality

The calendar is telling us that spring has sprung, even though the weather may not have fully followed suit just yet! Even without the cooperation of the weather, the spring is the best time for us to look at getting our homes in order and cleaning up the dust and cobwebs from a winters worth of shutting ourselves in from the cold, and hibernating in our cozy castles!

Although getting rid of the dust in all the crevices within our homes is a fantastic start…it’s not just the dust that we need to pay attention to. More and more research is telling us that our indoor air quality can be far worse than what we find outdoors, and our health, comfort and well-being are suffering. Considering we are spending more time inside than we ever have historically, the hidden pollutants that impact our air quality, such as mold & fungal particulates, VOC’s, and formaldehyde (just to name a few) are just as important to address during your spring cleaning as the dust! So here are some tips to help you reduce mold and improve your indoor air quality this spring:
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wooden computer table

Mold Stories – Jeremy Shelton

My name is Jeremy Shelton, and I provide all of the mold testing and mold inspection services performed by SafeAir Certified Mold Inspection.  I founded SafeAir Certified Mold Inspection in 2009 after discovering a severe mold problem in the crawlspace of the house I had just purchased. The mold growth in the crawlspace of the residence was polluting the air in the living area of the home, and I developed health problems as a result of the indoor type mold spores I was breathing.

Shortly after moving into the home I developed severe sinus congestion and suffered from sporadic headaches as a direct result of the toxic mold spores that I was breathing every day. Initially I was unable to discern the root of my health problems. My sinuses were dry and clogged, I felt fatigued all the time, and the headaches became more frequent. Initially, I attributed my sinus congestion to airborne allergens like pollen and my other health problems to stress. Over the course of about a year my symptoms slowly worsened and my quality of life began to suffer as a result.

Still unaware of the mold infestation in my crawl space, the headaches and fatigue were finally impacting my life to the point where I decided to consult with my physician. After multiple visits and tests, I still didn’t have an explanation. Eventually I discovered what seemed like a never ending nightmare in my crawlspace. Rain water was consistently entering the crawlspace of the home, providing the perfect environment for mold to thrive. The resulting infestation covered most of the wood components underneath the den. The structure was covered in a layer of mold that I can best describe as a thick white powder. The support beams, supporting the structure of the home, were damaged beyond repair and had to be replaced.

After having spore trap air samples collected in the crawlspace and upper level of the home, it was discovered that there were elevated levels of Aspergillus / Penicillium and Stachybotrys mold spores in the air in both the crawlspace and living area of my residence. After this discovery I decided to move from the residence, and my sinus congestion, headaches, and fatigue cleared up quickly. I then began doing as much research as I could on the subject of mold growth in homes, which eventually led to my first certification course as a Certified Mold Inspector and Assessor and my company SafeAir Certified Mold Inspection was born shortly after.

Jeremy Shelton, CMC
Certified Microbial Consultant
SafeAir Certified Mold Inspection

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