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    • Dobbo014
    • By Dobbo014 14th Sep 17, 10:08 AM
    • 5Posts
    • 0Thanks
    Mould on bedroom ceiling of rented flat
    • #1
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:08 AM
    Mould on bedroom ceiling of rented flat 14th Sep 17 at 10:08 AM
    I am the landlord and my tenant has contacted me to say there is mould in the top corner of the bedroom ceiling. I am not sure where i stand with this, it seems highly unlikely there is a leak coming from upstairs as it is a 1960's concrete 3 story block (with my flat in the middle) and the layout upstairs should be exactly the same as mine.
    The tenant has a history of being a bit lazy as earlier this year i had to go round and clear all the mould that had accumulated around the windows, which had clearly not been cleaned or wiped down since he moved in! - He had put some of those salt dehumidifier containers on the window sills but they were brimming with water.
    Is it likely that there is anything other than his lifestyle that is causing this mould? if it is his lifestyle is it mine or his responsibility to remove the mould?
    It looks like it will be a pain to remove as its right above a semi fitted wardrobe so no doubt parts of it have got behind that.
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    • pmlindyloo
    • By pmlindyloo 14th Sep 17, 10:45 AM
    • 11,632 Posts
    • 13,527 Thanks
    • #2
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:45 AM
    • #2
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:45 AM
    it could be the lifestyle of the tenant but as a landlord you do have a responsibility to check that it is not a fault in the structure of the building.

    Suggest you get someone in to take a look and rule out a problem with the structure of the building.

    If this is fine then you need to give clear instructions to the tenant about preventing this in the future - not drying washing indoors, ventilating the place etc etc.

    If it is the tenant's lifestyles then regular inspections need to be made to make sure tenant is doing everything to prevent further problems. May need to consider evicting tenants if they do not comply.

    Lots of information on the internet that you can print off for your tenant but do check it isn't structural first of all.
    • Narkynewt
    • By Narkynewt 14th Sep 17, 10:51 AM
    • 118 Posts
    • 24 Thanks
    • #3
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:51 AM
    • #3
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:51 AM
    As a landlord you need to cover yourself so I would suggest getting someone independent in to take a look and give you a report.
    If they find the mould is due to something wrong with the building, then fix it!

    If they find that the mould is due to something your tenant is doing, I would write to your tenant, enclosing the independent report, asking them to change whatever it is that the report find is causing the mould. Ma ke it clear that as per their tenancy they must keep the property in a decent condition (guessing you did put this bit in your tenancy with them...). Make them aware checks will be carried out and give dates, make them agree to these dates.

    If it continues you will, then have grounds to end their tenancy.

    Good Luck!
    • Dobbo014
    • By Dobbo014 14th Sep 17, 6:06 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    • #4
    • 14th Sep 17, 6:06 PM
    • #4
    • 14th Sep 17, 6:06 PM
    I have been round with my dad who's a structural engineer, he thinks its very unlikely that there is a leak from upstairs. How would I go about getting an independent report as if there is something structurally wrong its going to be coming from the flat above mine. Should I start by writing to the resident upstairs to ask if there is anything going on in his flat that could be causing this? Would an independent report even include entering the other premises or would they just look around my flat?
    • bxboards
    • By bxboards 14th Sep 17, 6:59 PM
    • 1,467 Posts
    • 1,136 Thanks
    • #5
    • 14th Sep 17, 6:59 PM
    • #5
    • 14th Sep 17, 6:59 PM
    black mould in a bathroom is a classic case of someone not opening windows or ventilating after bathing or showering.

    I would think about getting him to wipe it down with a bit of water with diluted bleech. I would say it is highly unlikely this is structural.

    I would try gently 'training' them to be a bit more aware of the consequences of not ventilating before I got in anyone to look at the structure. Eliminate the obvious causes first.
    • societys child
    • By societys child 14th Sep 17, 7:20 PM
    • 5,232 Posts
    • 5,785 Thanks
    societys child
    • #6
    • 14th Sep 17, 7:20 PM
    • #6
    • 14th Sep 17, 7:20 PM
    black mould in a bathroom is a classic case of someone not opening windows or ventilating after bathing or showering.
    Originally posted by bxboards

    It's not a bathroom:
    there is mould in the top corner of the bedroom ceiling

    • ProDave
    • By ProDave 14th Sep 17, 8:07 PM
    • 925 Posts
    • 1,037 Thanks
    • #7
    • 14th Sep 17, 8:07 PM
    • #7
    • 14th Sep 17, 8:07 PM
    I had a tenant like that. Complained the "walls were running with water" Went to look and they were. BUT the heating was off, the flat was cold, the windows and vents were shut, the bathroom fan was turned off AND there was soaking wet washing hung on a clothes horse in every room.

    I bought them a dehumidifier. I removed the fan isolator switch so they could not turn the fan off, and told them to heat and ventilate the property.

    They moved out shortly afterwards. There was never a problem with condensation before, or after that tenant.
    • Dobbo014
    • By Dobbo014 14th Sep 17, 9:06 PM
    • 5 Posts
    • 0 Thanks
    • #8
    • 14th Sep 17, 9:06 PM
    • #8
    • 14th Sep 17, 9:06 PM
    Yeah this is the strange thing, the bathroom is fine, yet the bedroom has this mould in the corner.
    I think I will ask him to clean it with some bleachy water and ensure the flat is kept ventilated and just to keep an eye on it.
    Getting him to do any sort of cleaning is a real chore. There was oil dripping from the extractor fan door (in the kitchen), when I told him it could do with a clean, he remarked the flat wasn't clean when he moved in! It wasn't professionally cleaned but it was in a good level of cleanliness and there certainly wasn't oil dripping.
    • AlexMac
    • By AlexMac 14th Sep 17, 10:29 PM
    • 2,059 Posts
    • 1,805 Thanks
    • #9
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:29 PM
    • #9
    • 14th Sep 17, 10:29 PM
    I am a brilliant, conciencious landlord, fix or replace stuff immediately a fault develops, keep the rent low for my longstanding tenant (who saves me voids and fees) but you seem too soft.

    There are ony three causes of damp (which leads to mould):

    - rising

    -pentrating (inclding externaland internal leakage)

    - condensation; aggravated by humidity, poor ventilation, lack of heating and sometimes, poor insulation (linking to cold , unventilated surfaces .). Mould in corners or behind furniture is a classic symptom as air circulation is poor there.

    Yours is obviously the latter.

    So what will you do about it? Tell the freeholder to insulate their building? Angst about a problem beyond your control?

    Or tell the tenant to heat, ventilate, stop drying their washing indoors, and run a bit of bleach over the mould which they have created?
    • lotteryman
    • By lotteryman 1st Dec 17, 1:46 PM
    • 47 Posts
    • 39 Thanks
    The mould is probably due to a lack of ventilation as other have said. It's a difficult one for a landlord but as far as I am aware the lanlord cannot compel the tenant to ventilate the property.
    If you search these forums for piv I (and others) have posted to say how positive ventilation units and and are now being used widely to resolve condensation and mold issue ( have a look on|)
    • pinklady21
    • By pinklady21 1st Dec 17, 3:32 PM
    • 652 Posts
    • 471 Thanks
    Is the mould adjacent to an outside wall? If it is, a possible way to prevent it in the future is to hang insulating wallpaper on that wall. Similar to lining paper but with a polystyrene backing. Can be painted over once hung with special adhesive.
    However.....I am inclined to agree with other posters, this is mould caused by condensation. Condensation is caused by warm moist air meeting a cold surface and condensing - ie turning to water. If the water is not wiped away, mould forms on the wet surface.
    Condensation is exacerbated by lack of heating, lack of ventilation, creating additional moisture in the air by drying clothes inside, not running extractor fans in kitchens or bathrooms when cooking or showering, and not opening windows or vents.
    It may be that your tenant is unaware of what causes mould - in the same way he was unaware that you need to clear extractor fans.....

    So - suggest he gets himself some HG Mould remover, cleans it up, and keeps the place properly heated and ventilated to avoid recurrence.
    Best of luck!
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