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'I'm at wits end' | Home renter alleges landlord neglected poor living conditions for months leading to mold growth

Koch says she first noticed mold when her sink and roof were leaking in August. She says she's been in a battle with her landlord to get the issue fixed ever since.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — As soon as you step into Haley Koch's Jacksonville home a musty smell penetrates your nostrils.

"Mentally draining is not just the word -- physically draining; I've been so stressed," Koch said.

Koch says she first noticed mold in her home in August after her roof and sink leaked.

Since then she has been in a battle with her landlord to get it cleaned up.

"We realized it was going to be something he actually wasn't going to take care of so we started looking into how to legally fight him the right way and when December came and we were like this is what we have to do," Koch said.

First Coast News reached out to Koch's landlord. He declined our interview request and told us it was a "non story."

However, when Koch contacted city code enforcement officials they found 12 violations including a loose toilet, broken countertop, and faulty window casings among other issues. 

Credit: Haley Koch

Koch also hired a mold inspector Mark Mongon of TCB EnviroCorp. Her landlord did as well.

"The mold count on the owner's lab report was over 7,000 mold spores inside, that's an extremely high amount of mold spores to have inside,"  Mongon said. "My mold spore amount when we did ours inside same place in the living room was over 400."

Koch says she doesn't feel the house is livable as she sent her children to stay at their grandparents house.

She says her reptile rescue business has suffered because of the conditions in the house.

Koch also went to the hospital in early December with breathing issues. She believes the conditions in her home are what landed her in the hospital. 

"I want to be somewhere safe for my animals and my kids it's not safe here and the only way I'm going to be able to do that is with the money that I'm owed," Koch said. 


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