The development of mould within properties can have serious health consequences for vulnerable individuals, particularly toddlers, the elderly and those with chronic health conditions. There have been cases in which people have died from inhaling mould spores. It is therefore essential for the government to intervene on this matter.
It has been reported by the English Housing Survey that one in ten private rented homes have serious mould issues. This could be because properties within the private rented sector are often older and have a lack of ventilation.
Recently, there have been more complaints from tenants against their agents about their property’s condition with the Property Redress Scheme. Mould issues within properties is often an area of debate since the tenant’s lifestyle may also be a factor in the development of condensation which contributes to mould. Another factor which may also be contributing to the build-up of mould in properties is that since energy bills are rising, this leads to under heated homes and greater hesitancy from tenants to ventilate their homes by opening windows.
To ensure that tenants are safe within their own homes and reduce the risk of the harmful effects of mould, the government has made it clear that it would not blame tenants for the development of mould due to their lifestyle and instead, the government holds property owners to account as the government believes it is the responsibility of all property owners to ensure properties are free from Category One Hazards.
It is recommended that property owners have regular inspections. During the inspections, they would be able to identify any potential hazards and to manage any existing issues. It is also important to educate vulnerable tenants in how to save money on heating their homes and preventing hazards such as mould.
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