What to Do If You notice an Infestation at Your Self-Storage center

Discovering mold inside your buildings would be a shock for any self-storage operator. It won’t just ruin tenants’ goods, it poses a serious health risk. While it’s best to prevent mold from growing in the first place, here’s what to do if you find it.
Judy Olsen | Aug 26, 2019

Owning a self-storage business comes with risk. Tenants anticipate their possessions to be safe while in storage space. If they confirm their items and see some have been hurt in one way or an additional, you can expect a complaint at the very minimum, or a lawsuit at the worst.

So many unfortunate things can happen to a storage space unit, from a break-in to a vermin invasion to fire or flood. Then there’s mold, a nightmare infestation that won’t just damage belongings but provides a potential health risk. Of course, it’s very best to prevent mold from ever sprouting at your storage facility; but if it does, here’s some guidance on what to do.

Identifying the Problem
Mildew forms and thrives anywhere there’s excess moisture. There are various types of mold, and their appearance may range from fuzzy to slimy. They also come in various colors, including black, green, white, orange and purple.

If there’s water buildup in your storage building because of a leaky roof, bad plumbing, overflowing gutters or humid air, mold will likely develop slowly over time and eventually wreak havoc on items made of paper, wood, fabric and upholstery. Worse, mold spores can trigger allergic reactions and respiratory problems among other complications in employees and tenants. If you find mold formations in any of your structures, you must deal with the problem as shortly as possible.

Always check out your buildings after a storm. The roof could have a leak, allowing rainwater to seep inside, which could create mold. Regularly check the walls for patches or spots. If you catch a musty odor in your building, it could be an indication of mold.

DIY (Do It Yourself) Clean-Up
If you or a tenant discovers mold inside a building, it’s important to act swiftly. If you plan to remove it yourself, take the following steps.

Identify the origin of the moisture. Prior to you start removing the mold, you must track down the source of the wetness causing it. It could be a leaky roof, busted plumbing or too much humidity in the air. You need to determine where all that excess moisture came from so you can address it and prevent further mold damage.

Remove the mold. Wear protective gear such as rubber mitts, goggles and work clothing that can be thrown into the trash when the job’s done. As for materials, you’re going to need rags, a pail, a scrub brush, non-ammonia soap or detergent, bleach, and an electric fan. Here’s what to do once you’ve gathered it all:

Top interior design trends in SoCal

Every home is unique in its own way, particularly when it comes to interior design. Homeowners often select design styles that are inspired by what is fashionable in their part of the world. Joybird took a look at the styles most searched by state using Google Trends.

The most common design choice across the country is the industrial aesthetic. As the dominant design trend in Illinois, this style takes influence from old factories and other industrial spaces with features like weathered wood, exposed brick, metal appliances, and concrete flooring. Industrial chic incorporates the open layouts of cities and lofts so homeowners can achieve a “warehouse” feel with a modern twist.

Vintage was the next most searched style and is largely popular in Texas. With the goal of creating an atmosphere of antiquity, this style is old fashioned and romantic, according to Small Design Ideas. It requires natural items like wood and fabrics as well as artificially aged furniture and decor to reflect the fashion of decades past.

The shabby chic design is big in Bay State and places emphasis on the appearance of an aged space with distressed furniture and mismatched decor. It can also feature natural elements like plants and clay or stone accessories, according to Freshome.com.

Homeowners in Georgia gravitate toward the rustic interior design style which is characterized as a rough, aged and casual aesthetic based on natural inspirations according to a Housebeautiful.com article. Materials like unfinished wood as well as stones and burlap fabrics characterize this style that aims to use organic materials in their most natural state.

California’s beaches inspire the seaside design that’s the most common trend in the state. In this aesthetic, natural light and soothing colors create a natural and calm atmosphere. A simplistic layout, blend of various textures, and abundance of cushions put the finishing touches on this seaside theme.

Let There Be Light (Emitting Diodes): Philly to Retrofit All 100,000 City Streetlights

The city of Philadelphia has a great many plans to reduce its municipal energy consumption in the name of staving off climate change. These include ambitious but clear initiatives like purchasing more renewable energy and creating more electric cars. But it turns out, when it comes to how much the city spends on its own energy bill, the single largest offender is something both ubiquitous and taken for granted: streetlights.

Our roughly 100,000 sodium-powered bulbs expense $15 million to light each year. Which is why, after experimentation with some pilot programs starting in 2011 that replaced 5,000 sodium bulbs with more energy-efficient LEDs, the city has guaranteed to scale up the whole effort and exchange all of its 100,000 streetlights, along with another 18,000 alley lights.

Philly’s been a bit slow on the uptake here — many other areas, like New York City and Chicago, have already retrofitted their lights. But for once, our calculated pace may actually be an advantage. That’s because many of the early LED installations from the early 2010s had just one setting — hyper bright — and were promptly were met with public outcry as residents complained about blocks now suddenly lit like hospital operating rooms. Technology has since improved to the point that there are dimmer LEDs available.

In spite of those improvements, some concerns over LEDs have remained — in large part thanks to a 2016 report from the American Medical Association that suggested certain LEDs, with their blue-light wavelengths, could hurt people’s eyes. Sodium-powered lights, on the other hand, typically fall in the more eye-friendly yellow-light spectrum.

The AMA’s report also referenced, quite ominously, “a long-term increase in the risk for cancer, diabetes, [and] cardiovascular disease” that could be caused by bright lights disrupting people’s circadian rhythm. But it seems even the AMA thought that was a bit over-dramatic, because in the end, the doctors still endorsed LED retrofitting, so long as cities use less powerful lights. (The AMA recommended lights no more powerful than 3000K, a unit of “color temperature” for which higher numbers signify more blue wavelengths. While most of Philly’s existing LEDs are at the 4000K level, the city is also testing 3500K, 3000K, and 2700K models.)

FHA Loans Info in 2019

In a major step three years in the making, the Federal Housing Administration announced Monday that it soon will back some mortgages on individual condominium units in condominium complexes that are not approved by the agency.

In the past, customers generally could not get an FHA-backed loan on a condominium unit except if the whole complex had FHA approval, but only 6.5% of the approximately 150,000 condominium complexes in the country had that approval. In San Francisco, only 17 complexes have been approved.

The new approval procedure is part of a rule change that will take effect Oct. 15. The goal is to increase owning a home among low-income, minority and first-time customers, and elders looking for to downsize. Often, these customers see condos as an affordable option, but don’t have the down payment, credit score or other qualifications needed to get a conventional loan backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. They could qualify for an FHA loan, but can’t get one on a condominium because the task is not FHA-approved.

Under the new rules, they might be able to. For projects that are lacking FHA approval, the agency will insure up to 10% of individual units in projects with 10 or more units, and up to two units in projects with fewer than 10 units.

There still will be a restricted review of the task to make sure it has sufficient reserves and meets owner-occupancy and other requirements.

Generally, the task would need at least 10% of the complex’s total monthly unit assessments in reserves, and would need at least 50% of the units occupied by owners. Those are the same requirements FHA imposes on entire complexes today.

The new rule, however, also makes changes to FHA’s approval procedure for entire complexes to make it more simplified and flexible. For example, under the new rule, FHA could adjust its owner-occupancy requirement to anywhere between 30% and 75%.