Calendar icon February 6, 2023

How to Get Mold out of Carpet

Removing mold from your carpet can be a tough task. Let us simplify it for you.


Your home is your haven, and you are proud of your constant dedication to keeping it clean. You have a checklist and a go-to cleaning solution for everything. But what do you do after you have been hit with a leaky ceiling or a plumbing issue, and all of a sudden you discover a stain on your carpet that you hadn't noticed before?

Mold growing in your home can easily go undetected. Knowing what triggers mold growth and what steps you can take to prevent it is something every homeowner should know. Removing mold from easily accessible areas like counters or bathrooms may only take a simple cleaning spray, but eliminating mold from a multilayered surface such as carpet requires a more thorough, deep clean. To understand how to remove mold, you first need to understand what mold is and how it develops.

  • How Problematic Can Mold Be On Your Health
  • How Does Mold Grow On Carpet
  • Steps To Remove Mold From Carpet
  • Steps To Prevent Mold Forming In Carpet

 

How Problematic Can Mold Be On Your Health?

Mold spores are tiny structures naturally found in the air. They are attracted to and rely on moist conditions to thrive. They also have no problem finding their way into your home. They can travel through doors, windows, heating and cooling systems, or even hitch a ride on your clothes or pets. Once they have found a conducive environment, such as your carpet, and have combined with the dust in your home, the perfect condition has been created for mold to grow.

Mold spores will exist in your home air in some capacity. They’re everywhere and not really harmful at low levels. The key to successfully "managing" mold spores is keeping it from collecting in large numbers. (That's when you actually get a mold problem.) To do this, one must deprive the spores of moisture, cellulose, and time.

When left untreated, mold can impact your health in several ways. According to the EPA, it releases allergens and can even release toxic substances, called Mycotoxins. If touched or inhaled, it can result in throat, skin, and eye irritation, as well as coughing and a stuffy nose. In more severe cases, when coupled with a weakened immune system, mold inhalation can even cause respiratory infections or bronchitis, as well as exacerbate symptoms in asthma sufferers.

How Does Mold Grow On Carpet?

Carpet is the perfect environment to trap and hide mold. This is especially true in especially wet areas such as your bathroom or basement. The thick, woven material, along with the carpet's backing, can easily absorb and retain moisture for an excessive amount of time. Carpet offers a complex structure comprised of many cellulose-based products. Wet carpet is mold’s dreamworld, so if it becomes moist, it creates that perfect environment needed for mold growth. Mold spores landing on the carpet use the moisture and cellulose to begin their germination process and are well on their path to becoming mold. Leaks, flooding, or even carpet that was cleaned but not thoroughly dried can result in mold growth.

Although mold only takes a couple of days to grow, it may take up to three weeks to become visible and may not even reach the carpet's surface. Mold is likely to develop and fester under the carpet's surface, making it undetectable. Oftentimes, once it has become visible, it has reached a point of severity where the carpet is no longer salvageable. Eventually, mold left untreated can even end up damaging the baseboards beneath your carpet. Although catching mold before it has become visible is difficult, it is not impossible. If you notice your carpet is damp, or that a musty smell has developed, it may be time to unveil a portion of your carpet and do some further investigation. Any case of discoloration or odor on your carpet's surface that seems to be mildew-like might be a sign that mold is present. It is crucial that any moisture detected on your carpet is addressed within 24 to 48 hours before it has a chance to fully develop into mold.

Steps To Remove Mold From Carpet.

Once you have diagnosed your carpet with mold, it is essential you act immediately. Be sure to keep the area cut off from the rest of your home. Mold can quickly and easily spread, turning a small issue into a significant project—and not the fun kind of project. There are two approaches to cleaning mold from your carpet. You can use natural products, or you can attack the area with stronger chemicals. Before handling any potentially moldy areas in your home, it is vitally important that you protect your face and hands. Face masks and gloves will go a long way in ensuring that the mold and cleaning chemicals do not affect your health.

It is equally important to note that you should not mix cleaning solutions unless otherwise specified, as this can create toxic fumes that would be hazardous to your health.
how to remove mold from the carpet using backing soda and vinegar

An age-old remedy to removing mold from carpet is to apply baking soda, leaving it overnight to treat the affected area, absorbing moisture and bad odors. Something as simple as baking soda is actually the best mold remover in many circumstances. Vacuum the next day and proceed to scrub with vinegar using a stiff bristle brush. A vacuum with a HEPA filter will help collect remaining mold spores, but the vacuum's filter will need to be changed before next use, or you will be at risk of spreading these spores to other areas of your house, contaminating it once again. If your vacuum does not have a HEPA filter, it is recommended to substitute this step with a broom and dustpan. The carpet then needs to be dried as quickly as possible. You can do so by ventilating the room with open windows and running your A/C. Extra fans or dehumidifiers are also helpful to expedite this drying process.

Vacuums without high-grade filtration will send mold spores back into your air, leaving them free to float around and land somewhere else they find suitable to colonize.

A more aggressive approach to removing mold is to use a solution made for just that. Mold-removing products, like Allersearch ADMS Anti-Allergen Spray, can be found at your local hardware store. It is essential that the excess spray is removed using a brush, discarding the mold that you scrape out into a trash bag. Using water will only increase the risk of mold returning. After scrubbing, continue to dry the carpet using the same process recommended for the natural mold removal approach. If you are cleaning mold from a rug, opt to dry the rug outside in direct sunlight for 48 hours, as this will reduce the risk of mold returning. These tips apply to all the rugs in your home that may have fallen victim to mold growth.

UV rays from the sun can actually help to kill mold spores.

Of course, if mold has spread to a larger than manageable area, it may be best to seek help from a professional. Although mold remediation is expensive, costing upwards of $2,000, you can be sure the affected areas will be properly treated. As important as it is to treat mold, it is equally important to determine the underlying cause of the mold's growth and to resolve that issue simultaneously. Mold due to flooding, a leak in the roof, or an unsealed crawlspace will come back if those problems are not treated immediately.

Steps To Prevent Mold Forming In Carpet.

Routine is key to preventing mold from forming in your carpet. Having a weekly regimen in place will help you stay proactive in the constant fight to keep your home a healthy one. Below are some tips that will keep you one step ahead of mold:

  • Regularly use a dehumidifier in areas prone to higher humidity to help keep moisture levels from reaching a point where mold spores need to grow. Anywhere from 30% to 50% humidity is normal for the inside of your home. It is important to check humidity levels frequently as they can change throughout the day. A/C units can also help manage humidity in your home.
  • Keep your home well ventilated by opening windows. This is an easy way to reduce moisture in your home.
  • Vacuuming often will help keep the dust that accompanies mold at bay. Steam clean any wet areas as this will help remove any toxins found in your carpet.
  • Do not install carpet in areas where moisture is often present. Clean rugs in bathrooms or basements often.
  • Do your homework when installing carpet. Be sure to choose moisture resistant padding and check that it is installed correctly.
  • Regularly replace your home air filters with ones that guarantee they filter out allergens such as dust and mold.

Mold can be scary, but removing it from your home is pretty easy. Remember, as your mother always said, "A healthy home is a happy home," and "Prevention is the best medicine." And if she didn't say that, I'm sure she was still a great mom.

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10 Best Property Management Websites for Property Managers

One important approach that property managers can take to keep up to date with current industry trends and approaches is to maintain a watchlist of different property management websites. That's because these sites often reflect best design practices and website templates as well as content sharing ideas. Today we'll cover some of the top property management websites, all considered favorites and regularly featured on “Top 10” lists in the industry, with a focus on what makes each one distinctive, whether from a design optic or a content perspective. 1. Second Nature It may seem odd for us to mention ourselves first on this list, but we are genuinely proud of our brand and messaging! After all, we’re in this business for a reason – and that’s why the content of the Second Nature website is so squarely people-focused, with an emphasis on solutions that improve the lives of residents, investors, and property managers alike. There’s a robust business principle underpinning this “Triple Win” philosophy: residents want their needs proactively anticipated, and they're willing to pay (and stay) for that service. This is particularly true for a younger generation that is attuned to the convenience offered by services such as Uber and Amazon. That’s why the language used on the website reflects a humanistic approach that goes beyond transactional basics, preferring “residents” rather than “renters,” for example, or “home” rather than “rental property.” It’s also why Second Nature’s “Resident Benefits Package” is front and center, and designed to give residents, investors, and property management businesses a win. Accordingly, like all successful marketing, Second Nature’s value proposition is not only tangible – it’s personal. Visit www.secondnature.com to learn more. 2. Nest DC The Nest DC website also focuses on the families behind the doors and the people behind the investment portfolios. Although residential real estate management is associated with a certain gravitas, the language as well as the overall branding of the Nest DC website plays off of a certain “avian” riff and is designed for easy readability. Where most sites incorporate an “About Us” page, for instance, Nest DC features an “About the Birds” content piece. It’s all done with serious intent, however, and the website design is sleek, clear, and user-friendly. Visit www.nest-dc.com. 3. Bay Management Group As soon as you hit the homepage of the Bay Management Group website, it’s clear that its primary target audience consists of real estate investors and property owners. That said, the site does host an impressive library of instructional and advisory videos for tenants, property managers, and landlords, as well as investors. With the tagline “property management that’s a cut above the rest,” home page testimonials, and a blue-toned web design of the sort favored by financial institutions to connote trustworthiness, the focus is on differentiation through delivery of high-quality property management services to deliver reliable rental income. Beyond its primary “free property management analysis” feature, other web functionalities include a blog, owner portal, tenant portal, and various program application options. Visit www.baymgmtgroup.com 4. Rentberry Rentberry is a global rental platform describing itself as a “transparent and secure home rental platform that connects tenants and landlords.” With the tagline “Renting done right – finally,” its principal focus is on prospective tenants and landlords. Top-level navigation includes online rent payments/rent collection. It also includes tenant screening functionality as well as options to search listings for vacancies or create a property listing. Among the usual resources (blog, help center, FAQ, contact information), Rentberry also features pricing guides for both tenants and landlords to help streamline the onboarding process. Visit www.rentberry.com 5. Grace Property Management & Real Estate Based in Denver (Colorado), Grace Property Management & Real Estate focuses on both residential and commercial properties in Denver. Although the company was founded in 1978, its online presence boasts astute use of online marketing tools and property management solutions, to say nothing of search engine optimization, with numerous calculators and other resources available from the top-level menu. Like many companies with a strictly regional presence, Grace Property follows the tendency of including full social media and phone contact information in the header. Visit www.rentgrace.com. 6. MESA Properties MESA Properties gives its geographical focus the hero image treatment, with the tagline “Servicing the Inland Empire, Eastern San Gabriel Valley and High Desert.” Below the header, it also bills itself as “an owner-centered property management company.” Accordingly, much of the functionality on offer from the top-level navigation is focused on professional property manager services and resources for owners, but it does include resources for tenants, including maintenance request options, and portal login. Visit https://www.mesaproperties.net/ 7. Golden State Property Management The Golden State Property Management website presents with the tagline “Total property management of the most comfortable homes in the South Bay,” as well as two prominent feature buttons aimed at residents (“Pay Rent”) and potential residents (“Search Vacancies”). With straightforward top-level menu options, mobile-friendly design, and high-contrast navigation elements, this site is exemplary in its simplicity. Visit www.goldenstatepropertymanagement.com 8. Sleep Sound Property Management Sleep Sound Property Management takes aim at the stress of managing the rental process, and as such takes on an advisory persona in its content. With the word “guarantee” appearing over 10 times on the homepage alone, the message is clear: this is a company devoted to providing great property management services in support of maximizing investment returns. Its “Why Choose Us” page also highlights its investments in cloud-based property management software, also designed to ease the stress of managing property investments. Visit www.propertymanagementportlandor.com 9. Good Life Property Management The website of this San Diego-based property management company is one of the only companies in the industry to highlight customizable user elements (color and font size) in the header of every page of its website. From the marketing perspective, this sends an important signal that the company is serious about finding ways to partner effectively with its community of investors and tenants. Visit www.goodlifemgmt.com 10. Luxury Property Care Luxury Property Care bills itself as “Florida’s only full-service property management and investment concierge for residential and commercial properties.” Its focus on offering high-end services is reflected in its mission statement: “Treat yourself to the luxury you deserve and let us handle every aspect of investing in off-market real estate and building a first-class rental empire with ease.” It’s also reflected in the website design scheme, with black and gold color elements being a popular way for brands to convey notions of elegance and prestige. Visit www.luxurypropertycare.com Follow the Second Nature Website to Keep Tabs on the Property Management Industry At SecondNature.com, you’ll find an abundance of resources designed to keep you up to date on events, analysis, and expert perspectives in the field – all geared toward helping property managers create a “Triple Win” that benefits residents, investors, and property managers alike: Triple Win Property Management Blog Triple Win Property Management Podcast Triple Win Property Management Events Learn more about Second Nature’s Resident Benefits Package, which is designed to generate revenue and establish Triple Win conditions for your residents, investors, and business.

Calendar icon February 26, 2024

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10 Best Property Management Blogs to Read and Learn From

As a property manager, one of the best ways to stay attuned to the latest trends, technologies, and strategies in the field is to read industry blogs across a range of property management websites. That's because the content of these blogs often consists of shared best practices and practical tips from peers and other experts. They also help you keep abreast of any regulatory changes and compliance requirements that may inform your business decisions and strategies. Today we'll cover some of the top property management blogs, with a focus on what each site brings to the table. 1. Second Nature The SecondNature blog provides insights on a wide range of topics related to property management, including market trends, technology, resident retention, and more. Its focus is primarily on a “Triple Win” philosophy, which expresses the idea that residents, property managers, and investors can go beyond transactional basics to create new, mutually winning experiences. In that vein, sample blog post titles include “How to Start a Resident-focused Property Management Company in 13 Steps,” “9 Ways to Improve Your Resident Experience,” and “How to Craft a Lease Renewal Letter that Wows Your Residents.” With top categories ranging from “Operational Efficiency” to “Resident Experience” and “Homeowner Insights,” the SecondNature blog is a valuable, highly readable resource for property owners and managers alike. Visit the SecondNature blog 2. Bay Management Group Blog The Bay Management Group manages over 6,000 units throughout Pennsylvania, Maryland, Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C. Its blog reflects this partially regional focus, with categories including “Owning a rental property in Maryland,” “Owning a rental property in Pennsylvania,” and the like. However, much of the content is broadly relevant to the property management business, with articles including “7 Ways to Ensure Your Potential Tenant’s References are Real,” “Tips for Successful Real Estate Partnerships” and “What is the Renter’s Bill of Rights and How Does It Protect Tenants?” This is a great blog that hosts archives going back to July 2012, making it one of the more venerable sites in this list. Visit the Bay Management Group Blog 3. Nest DC Blog Nest is a Washington management firm that focuses on homes and residents in and around Maryland, with expertise in single family homes, condos, multifamily housing, and mixed-use property in high-density, urban environments. Its clean, stripped-down design dispenses with the standard trappings of blogs such as tags and categories, and features both job listings and articles, with sample titles including “Important Factors for Real Estate Investing,” “Best Practices for Tenant Screening,” and “A Guide to the Eviction Process in Washington DC.” Visit the Nest DC Blog 4. Buildium Blog The property management software company Buildium publishes blog posts and other resources on a wide range of property management topics, from accounting & taxes to legal considerations, to marketing tips and the latest news from Buildium. Clearly, the content is aimed at a broad segment of the property management community, including rental property owners, property maintenance professionals, and real estate investors. Sample blog post titles include “The ins and outs of HOA reserve fund accounting,” “The best rent payment app in 2024: Comparing 8 online rent payment systems,” and “The 5 best multifamily property management software solutions in 2024.” Visit the Buildium Blog 5. Appfolio Blog Another software company, Santa Barbara (California)-based AppFolio focuses on SaaS for the real estate market. You do not need to be a user of the Appfolio software to find its blog relevant – in fact, much of the content focuses on issues of broad interest to property management and property investment groups, with sample blog article titles including “Three Leasing KPIs Every Property Manager Should Track to Optimize Their Business,” “4 Ways to Strengthen Vendor Relationships,” and “Your Ultimate Guide to Leasing Season: How to Maximize Occupancy and Efficiency.” Visit the Appfolio Blog 6. BiggerPockets BiggerPockets is positioned as a complete resource for anyone looking to succeed in real estate investing. Thus, its blog is squarely focused on matters relating to property investment and rental income, with titles that reflect that focus (e.g., “12 Ways To Make Passive Income From Real Estate Investing,” “High Credit Borrowers Get Punished and New Landlord Laws Put Tenants First,” and “2024 Rental Market Outlook: Is a Shift Coming Next Year?”) However, it also provides a number of articles with potentially broader interest to property management services (e.g., “Put THIS in Your Lease Agreement (So Tenants Don’t Break It!)” “9 Ways Your Property Management Tool Can Improve Your Business,” and “The Rise and Fall of the American Shopping Mall”). Visit the BiggerPockets blog 7. Rentometer Blog Rentometer provides a number of offerings around its collection and analysis of approximately 10 million rental records annually. The Rentometer blog is an extension of this capability, and aims to provide marketing insights to help manage real estate businesses. Its blog publications date back to 2018, and provide perspectives on remote property management, tools for growing real estate businesses, and more. Sample titles include “6 Tips for Communicating Rent Increases,” and “How to Use Rent Comps When Setting Your Rent Price.” Visit the Rentometer Blog 8. Propertyware Blog Like Buildium, Propertyware is an acquisition of the RealPage corporation but it continues to maintain a blog featuring news, trends and tips on single-family rental properties. Sample titles include “10 Tips For Maintaining Electrical Safety At Your Rental Homes,” “What’s Hot: Tankless Water Heaters for Rental Housing,” and “How Rental Property Software Helps in Processing Security Deposits.” The blog has also compiled different article series under various themes and topics, making it easier to navigate the wealth of information on offer. Visit the Propertyware blog 9. Rent Manager Blog The Rent Manager blog is largely focused on news about this property management software developed by London Computer Systems (LCS), and features tips and best practices for users, as well as news on feature enhancements. However, the blog also includes a dedicated category for property management trends, with articles such as “The Benefits of AI for Residential Property Management,” “Why Lowering Renewal Rents is a Smart Move for Multifamily in 2024,” and “Resident Screening: The Lost Art of the Reference Check.” Visit the Rent Manager blog 10. All Property Management Blog The All Property Management Blog reflects its identity as a marketplace of property management services, with articles aimed at real estate investors as well as property managers. Blog categories include property management tips and advice, product reviews, and content related to property taxes and finances. Sample titles include “How to Rent Out an Apartment: The Go-To Guide for New Landlords,” “Top 10 Rental Listing Syndication Websites and Time-Saving Tips,” and “5 Successful Rental Property Management Strategies.” Visit the All Property Management Blog Follow the Second Nature Blog, Podcast, and Events to Keep Tabs on the Property Management Industry At SecondNature.com, you’ll find an abundance of resources designed to keep you up to date on events, analysis, and expert perspectives in the field – all geared toward helping property managers create a “Triple Win” that benefits residents, investors, and property managers alike: Triple Win Property Management Blog Triple Win Property Management Podcast Triple Win Property Management Events Learn more about SecondNature’s Resident Benefits Package, which is designed to generate revenue and establish Triple Win conditions for your residents, investors, and business.

Calendar icon February 21, 2024

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