Experts are warning of an insidious and often hidden health threat lurking in Australian homes, and growing as summer approaches.
Mermaid Beach resident Rosie Ball said she had no idea her unit had been taken over by the fungus.
She had been suffering from insomnia and feeling constantly unwell and fatigued, with seemingly no explanation.
“I’m really concerned for my health,” Ms Ball said.
“We just assumed the ceiling was discoloured.”
Ms Ball’s entire ceiling, bathroom, windowsills, air conditioner, furniture and the walls surrounding her bed were all covered in mould.
Mr Murtah said Ms Ball’s house was one of several homes causing health problems for the people living in them.
“A lot of people think that it’s just a bit dirty or that it’s discolouration in the paint not realising that they’re living with mould every day,” Mr Murtah said.
“We’re treating about 350 properties a week.”
Exposure to mould in damp homes can be the cause of health issues like nasal congestion, sneezing, and respiratory infections, and worsen asthma and allergies.
Mr Murtah said mould thrived in damp conditions and was often more prevalent in summer months.
“Our sub-tropical environment and the amount of wet weather we’ve had recently is the perfect environment for mould,” he said.
“The best time to treat mould growth is as soon as you see it.”