My Landlord Is Rich And I Live With Mold

by Etoile L. Roush
(Sacramento, Ca.)

I moved into this place in 2006. There were things I mentioned to the landlord that I assumed he would fix, for instance a hole in the screen on the front door. I was surprised he just had a patch put on it, but that gave me some idea of what kind of a landlord he is. However my son was going to college and we needed a place to live so we took it.

I worked a few more years and was well until I quit working at 79, and stayed home mostly. While staying home I became ill and found out I had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Life would never be the same. Now in the year 2016 I moved the hutch cabinet and found the whole wall behind was full of some kind of mold. I called quickly for help because I had been very ill for most all of the winter. I was sneezing, coughing, some hives, tired, and breathing heavily if I walked very far. So far all they did was come out and tear out a wall, sheet rock board, and take a test with them and leave a big mess in the dining room. I already know the landlord to be just a money making man and he will cut corners any way he can. For example, all the other houses on our block have been painted, but ours has not and has dry rot all around it. I found out he did not allow tar under the shingles on the roof when they roofed it, so as a result I’m pretty sure I am living in an extensive mold problem. All this because this landlord doesn’t care about me even though I have never missed paying the rent on time in all these years -10 years.

Well I am older now and don’t feel like moving, so I guess I will be here in this dry-rotted house, with mold that he will just paint over. The landlord is a very rich man, and recently moved back east. He has a person working for him to collect his money. Me? I have a doctor’s appointment! COPD plus I guess!


Thank you for writing to us Etoile. You are living in a horrible situation but you have rights and you need to take action. The first thing I would advise you to do is to call your local Department of Public Health. They handle issues like this all the time and should be able to help you. Additionally the California Senior Legal Hotline can also help provide assistance. Their number is 1-800-222-1753.

Living in an environment with mold is not healthy, and your health issues will only get worse the longer you stay there. Here are some articles that may be helpful:

Dangers of Mold in The Home

Landlord Responsibility For Mold

Dealing With Mold in Your Home

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