Mould damage can destroy personal belongings, ruin floorboards and eat its way through walls, wood and the architecture of your home.
And thanks to Australia’s humid climate and frequent rainfall, it’s a common problem for Australian households.
So, can you claim mould damage on insurance? And what should you do if you discover mould damage in your home or rental property?
Let’s find out.
Does My Insurance Cover Mould Damage?
More often than not, most insurance policies do not cover mould damage.
Why? Because mould and fungus damage is considered preventable.
Promptly addressing a mould issue should result in minimal mould damage, therefore it is considered a preventable event by most insurance companies.
Remember, this is the general rule. Luckily, it’s not always that black and white.
What Can I Claim For?
Most insurance policies will allow you to claim if mould damage arises as a result of an insured event, such as flooding or storm damage.
For example, if your home is inaccessible due to a flood, your insurance company should cover you for any subsequent mould damage as a result.
What Can’t I Claim For?
The key phrase here is ‘preventable’. If mould damage arises in your home as a result of moisture in the air or lack of ventilation, most insurance companies won’t provide cover for this. Therefore, you will be responsible for the cost of replacing damaged items.
Disclaimer: This information is general only. All insurance claims are assessed on a case-by-case basis dictated under the terms of your insurance policy. For more details regarding coverage, exclusions and exemptions, please refer to your insurance PDS.
What Should I Do If I’m Not Covered?
Even if you’re not covered, you still need to act. These are some simple steps you can follow to stop an infestation from spreading any further.
Mould takes as little as 48 hours to form and typically colonises within the first 12 days of being visually noticeable.
I Own The Property – What Do I Do?
If you notice sizeable mould damage in your home, it’s important to contact a professional mould removal company.
A professional mould removal service will assess the damage, take moisture readings and in some cases, take mould samples for testing.
From there they’ll detail the severity of the damage and provide a step-by-step process to safely and effectively remove the mould. This process is known as ‘mould remediation’ and should come with a transparent quote before treatment begins.
What If I’m Renting?
If you live in a rental and notice signs of mould damage, it’s important to document it and contact your landlord or real estate agent immediately.
From here, your landlord must take action to ensure the property is fit for habitation by reaching out to a professional mould removal company for remediation.
To find out more about mould in a rental property and who is responsible, see our article here.
What About Severe Mould Damage?
In more severe instances of mould and water damage, the mould cannot always be remediated. In this case, specialist water damage restoration services are often called in to safely remove all mould-affected items from the property.
Structural drying equipment is also helpful to effectively draw moisture from the air. These services are especially useful in the event of recent flooding or when there is too much water to remove on your own.
How Much Does Mould Removal Cost?
Stating the cost of mould removal would be like stating the length of a piece of string – there is no set cost.
As a general rule of thumb, mould removal can cost anywhere between $500 to $2000 for residential properties.
What Influences The Cost?
The cost to remediate mould damage will generally depend on two factors:
The Location Of Mould
Mould growing in hard to reach areas like crawl spaces, ceilings and behind walls can be tricky to remove. In these cases, technicians may need specialised equipment to dry out the area, which may incur a higher cost.
The Severity Of Mould
Mould damage throughout the entire house, instead of isolated to one room, will affect the overall cost of mould removal. In some cases, mould damage may be so severe that the home is classified as uninhabitable.
Therefore, the cost of professional treatment is low in comparison to the consequences of ignoring a mould infestation.
Should I Seek Out A Professional Mould Removal Service?
Absolutely. While some insurance companies may not cover mould damage, its essential to still pursue immediate action when you spot mould growth in the home.
Take the necessary steps to clean and dry the area and seek out a professional mould removal service like MouldMen.
The MouldMen team will inspect, treat and provide you with a Mould Management and Prevention Plan to ensure that your home is kept safe and free from mould. Call us on 1300 60 59 60 to book your free inspection today.