Renters, Landlords, and Mold


Mold problems in buildings are a result of water and moisture problems. Renters need to operate the heating and ventilation systems to reduce water condensation. Renters need to notify landlords promptly, in writing, of any water leaks or moisture buildup due to building problems. If there is a building problem, it should be fixed by the landlord. Your county or city building code enforcement official may take action if building problems are not addressed - they won't respond to mold complaints, so it's important to stress the source of the water problem.

If you rent your home, you are covered by the Residential Landlord-Tenant Act (RCW 59.18). The Washington State Office of the State Attorney General does not handle consumer complaints about issues covered by the Residential Landlord-Tenant Act. They do provide a list of landlord-tenant resources for those seeking information. 


Landlords must follow the requirements of the Residential Landlord-Tenant Act (RCW 59.18). Landlords are responsible for maintaining rental units, including fixing building problems such as water leaks and ventilation or heating defects which may lead to moisture problems. Landlords must notify their tenants about the health hazards associated with exposure to indoor mold and ways to control mold growth in their dwelling units. Posting this information in a visible, public location at the dwelling unit property is allowed. The following materials can fulfill the notification requirements:

Mold Guidance

Mold Guidance for Tenants and Landlords, Northwest Clean Air Agency - Understand why mold problems start and who's responsible for fixing the problem. Available in English and Spanish.

Resources for Resolving Problems

Landlord-Tenant Resources, State Attorney General's Office - Helpful resources for renters, including legal assistance and dispute resolution services. Some services are available in other languages.

Other Tenant and Landlord Concerns

Tenant and Landlord Resources - Read about concerns other than mold, such as carbon monoxide alarms, lead, pests, and septic systems.


Content Source: Indoor Air Quality Program