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 Mold Can Grow in Any Climate

The following letter is from a client in Santa Fe, New Mexico, a “dry” climate:


What started as a simple, tiny roof leak has turned into total destruction of my home. Upon contacting my insurance agent, I was notified that my Lender and Mortgage holder had not renewed the insurance policy. I then wrote a letter making a claim with the Lender. I was notified in a response letter by the CEO the bank that the insurance lapsed, by “human error”.  I was assured by him that my house would be fixed and the matter resolved to my satisfaction – but that would turn out to be untrue.


18 months later – nothing has been done to mitigate the damage to my home, my personal belongings and my health. My attorney who has expertise in Insurance matters and fraud investigated and it became apparent that I had been duped by the bank, the mortgage holder, and the insurance company.


By the summer time my home had extensive water damage from a simple roof leak. The water migrated within the sub roof and drifted through approximately 5,000 square feet of the house. There is no way to stop it. There is no end in sight. Mold has been growing at an alarming rate. The sub roof became the perfect Petri dish to cultivate and grow mold. There are actual “ears” of mold growing from the carpet. The house stinks. My dogs cannot come into the home except for one small bedroom at night. There are many different kinds of mold including Stachybotrys, black mold. It is in the kitchen, which is unusable, the maid’s quarters, one of the guest bedrooms and maybe other places. It is hennas looking. It is black and grows like a spider web up the walls, on the wood and ceilings. The wet mold and heat create a stench that is similar to what I experienced when I went to New Orleans. It over comes your senses.


Last summer the mold became so bad that I could not go through the day without taking a nap for 1-3 hours. I had become lethargic, tired, cranky, and forgetful. I was diagnosed with mold poisoning by my doctors. I have tried to stay out of the house, but it is impossible as it is full of personal belongings, art, antiques and my office. I tried everything I could to get the bank and insurance to repair my home. There were many promises made in writing. But they never came to fruition. I was passed off to at least 6 different representatives always stating that they “wanted to resolve this matter” but never did.


The lender and insurance company rented me a “like kind” home last year. During a 3-month period the insurance company did nothing to repair my home or to mitigate the damage. It was just a ploy to dupe me. I had to move back into the house after the insurance terminated the lease. I had to live in the house during the winter without heat as the mold had infiltrated the ventilation systems. I was miserable.

The insurance produced policies that were not valid. They purported to be policies – but they were only specimens. With those facts – we had made our fraud case. Insurance companies do not want to deal with mold. They want to say, “it is not covered" by the insurance policy. But that is not true. I got mold in my home as a by-product of the water damage. It is my opinion that the house will be a total loss to the mold. I am sure that the house will have to be torn down. It is impossible to sell a house with mold. This all breaks my heart. It is so unnecessary.
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