Action 9: Owner/ renter responsibility when mold forms

by: Jason Stoogenke Updated:

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ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. —

Some residents are living with possible mold and mushrooms growing in their homes.
 
They live in Happy Grove Mobile Home Park in Rockwell, Rowan County.
 
Verna Coley showed Action 9 what looks like mushrooms in her ceiling.
 
"All that brown stuff oozing out of the crack there," she said. "I thought, 'Oh my gosh, what is this?'"
 
She also saw black marks in her bathroom that look like mold.
 
Her son lives next door and showed Action 9 the same thing but it’s only worse. 
 
"The owner just acts like he didn't think it wasn't a problem and just kind of looked and, 'OK,'" Coley said.
 
They, and other neighbors, got frustrated and told Action 9's Jason Stoogenke. 
 
So, Stoogenke called the owner Heriberto Castillo. He said the homes had leaks and in Coleys' son's case, it was a leaky hot water heater.
 
Castillo said he fixed the problems once already.
 
Coley and her son said that's true. 
 
Castillo also said they missed rent and Coley's son admitted he missed several months' payment.
 
Legally, Castillo could evict Coley's son but called him a friend and said he didn't want to kick him out and agreed to take another look at the possible mold and possible mushrooms. 
 
In North Carolina, landlords have to fix problems that cause mold.
 
That usually means fixing leaks but they don't have to clean the actual mold or fungus.
 
Castillo took care of that problem too, even though he didn't have to. 
 
That's up to the renter. Information on cleaning mold: http://emergency.cdc.gov/disasters/pdf/flyer-get-rid-of-mold.pdf.