Tenants sue over mold in leased O'Fallon home

Andrea Dearden Sep. 14, 2011, 1:26pm

Members of an O'Fallon family are suing the owner and manager of the home they were living in after it was allegedly found to have multiple moisture and mold problems.

Jerod, Kristina and Isabelle Marsh filed the lawsuit Sept. 8 in St. Clair County Circuit Court against Strano & Associates LTD, doing business as Strano & Associates Real Estate Property Management Department. Mikel Phillips, the owner of the property, is also named as a defendant.

Court records show the Marshes signed a two-year lease and moved in to the Shadow Ridge Crossing home in June 2009. The family of three claims they complained several times to a property manager at Strano & Associates about accumulated water, moisture and air quality concerns in the home. A Strano & Associates representative allegedly inspected the home themselves or through their agents and said there were no problems with moisture or mold in the Shadow Ridge Crossing house.

The Marshes say they hired American Environmental Laboratories to perform an inspection of the home in September 2010. The inspection allegedly turned up many issues, including condensation in the ventilation system, wet carpeting and padding. There was allegedly mold found growing in the walls and furniture.

The Marshes claim both the property manager and the owner failed to keep the home in a habitable condition. They say the situation has caused all three of them emotional distress. The family accuses both defendants of negligence and ask to be paid more than $150,000 in damages to replace affected property, pay for the family's relocation and court costs.

Attorney Jesse L. Trautmann of Belleville is representing the Marshes.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case No. 11-L-503.

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