In short, my question is: Are tenants liable for any mould damage to the house?

The reason I ask is because I am currently renting (along with six others) student accommodation, and the letting agency have send a number of emails recently to warn us about mould and to tell us about the way to reduce it - fair enough, no one wants mould!

However, in these emails they say that we will be held responsible for any damage from mould and will subsequently have funds removed from our deposit.

I have two issues. Firstly, I am unsure that tenants are legally responsible for mould, since it is fundamentally down to the house and the lack of ventilation systems (I know for a fact that for little over £1000 systems can be installed in the loft that will near enough guarantee mould prevention throughout the house - my uncle works in the industry). So can someone let me know this, citing any government statements if possible.

Secondly, and quite an off-topic issue, are landlords even allowed to take money from the deposit without the tenants permission?

  • 2
    A reasonable interpretation is that tenants will be held responsible for mold damage attributable to their negligence. Similarly, landlords can keep deposit money, without the tenant's permission, to pay for damage for which the tenant is responsible. In both cases, the landlord and the tenant may disagree about which party is responsible. There are ways to resolve these disagreements, up to and including civil litigation.
    – phoog
    Jan 20 '16 at 18:11

I don't have enough to comment but I know where I live it's the landlords responsibility to take care of mold. That being said, if it is mold caused by negligence of the tenant e.g. always leaving the window open in the rain or something, then the landlord can claim compensation.

Where I live the landlord keeps some of the damage deposit he must prove to the tenant why he did so within a months time of when he was supposed to return the damage deposit. For example if it cost him $200 to repair damage done by the mold, he must return the rest of the damage deposit and a letter explaining why $200 was kept, and the receipts.

Where do you live? The laws really do very greatly from region to region. It has been my observation that it's not that uncommon for landlords to try and sneak something into the lease that isn't really allowed by law.

  • 1
    I don't think the asker is in the same country as you, just going by the currency differences. Jan 30 '16 at 0:28

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