Is my landlord liable for moisture and mold damage to my personal property?

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Is my landlord liable for moisture and mold damage to my personal property?

I live in a multi-unit building and recently became aware that the crawl space under my apartment has flooded. I have no access to it and am not sure how long it has been that way but it was exacerbated by a recent burst pipe. My personal property inside the apartment has suffered moisture and mold damage. The local health inspector came but did not find mold on the walls and referred me to the County Board of Health. I am waiting to hear back. Will my damages be covered by my landlord’s insurance, and if not, is she liable for the damages since she failed to address the flooding?

Asked on October 31, 2011 under Real Estate Law, New Jersey

Answers:

FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

If you had advised your landlord previosuly of water intrusion issued with the rental that you are renting from him or her and nothing was done by the landlord to look into the situation and later on your personal property was damaged as a result of the water intrusion, the landlord very well could be liable for the damages that you sustained.

You need to remember that you would bear the burden of proving liability and damages for your claims against the landlord. I would place your landlord on notice about the situation with a letter keeping a copy for future need. Whether or not your belongings are covered under his insurance policy will have to be determined from the language of the policy of insurance.

Good luck.


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