Homeowners are responsible for the maintenance and care of their own homes. Renters have to contact their landlord when something goes wrong or needs fixing.
When the landlord is responsible for mold in apartment
According to the N.C. Department of Justice, landlords in North Carolina have legal responsibility to the following:
- repair and maintain plumbing
- electrical & air conditioning
- common areas
Buildings must also abide by all applicable building and housing codes.
There is no explicit mention of mold. N.C. law requires that landlords keep rental properties in a “fit and habitable condition.” Federal law has no codes about landlord responsibilities about mold.
Mold may be the result of a plumbing issue. In that case, the landlord handles repairing the plumbing issue. The mold has the potential to cause structural damage and health problems if not treated. Tenants may mention that the landlord is not keeping the property in proper condition. A small mold problem can become a huge mold problem for the landlord once it has reached that level of damage.
Landlords may refuse to handle the plumbing problem. This may result in mold. Tenants do have the right to report the negligence to the proper authorities. Extensive mold growth can aggravate asthma and respiratory health issues. People who are allergic to mold may also experience rashes.
Landlords are responsible for keeping properties “fit and habitable.” Tenants can make the case where the landlord must handle the mold problem. But, mold is not written in the legal requirements for landlords.
The renter’s responsibility for mold in apartment
A small instance of mold growth may not qualify. It would only apply if an underlying plumbing problem that caused the mold.
Renters are also responsible for taking care of the property. Those who pour water onto the carpet and do not clean or dry the area are responsible for any mold growth. Renters are responsible for any problems associated with their apartments. The landlord is only required to handle problems that the renter would not have caused.