September is Mold Awareness Month and we’d like to talk about what you can do about mold in your property. We’ll show you where to find it, how to manage it, and why it can be harmful to your tenants.
The presence of mold in a home can cause health issues for occupants and it should be taken seriously. Those that have allergies or sensitivities may show allergy-like symptoms when touching or breathing in spores. People with asthma and other respiratory conditions could also find their symptoms aggravated.
Where to Look
This tenacious growth can thrive anywhere there is an excess of moisture. Some common places include bathrooms, underneath sinks, and basements. Carpet, wood, and ceiling tiles can harbor spores. Mold can even be found in the walls or behind wallpaper. Any place that has excessive moisture can be a hot spot for bacteria and molds.
What You Can Do
Keeping moisture down is key to prevention. If there are damp surfaces, be sure to dry them within 48 hours. Be on the lookout for condensation on interior windows, which is a sign that you need more insulation. Make sure that ventilation systems are working properly and keep bathrooms and basements dry. Use exhaust fans, dehumidifiers, and ceiling fans to reduce moisture through the property. Keep gutters clear so that water is flowing away from your foundation and siding.
Limit your exposure to mold by taking care of the issue immediately. If the area is small, less than an area of 3 feet x 3 feet, that you can probably handle it on your own. Larger patches could require professional assistance. You should also call a contractor if there’s a larger issue at hand, like water damage or contact with contaminated water.
Avoid coming into contact with mold by wearing gloves, goggles, and a face mask. Hard surfaces can be cleaned with detergent and water. Dry the surface well and be aware that some staining can occur. If a surface is porous, then you may need to remove and replace the material.
If you’re unsure of how to clean an area or are concerned that there may be damage to an item that is delicate or had sentimental value, locate a local cleaning specialist.