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Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Can a foreigner buy...? Can a foreigner rent...? What about deposits? Bad neighbors? Unreasonable landlords? Miscellaneous problems?
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Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Lao Tzu » 30 Jan 2016, 21:21

Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

I discovered a few days ago when I cleaned the apartment that there were a lot of mold in the window on top floor and lower floor. Then I had my waistbelt (made of skin) completely eaten up by mold. And now yesterday when I was going to pack my things my suitcase (expensive Samsonite), a computer bag on wheels and a rucksack also had mold on them, so I have to throw all these. And this morning my leather shoes also had mold on them.

So today I bought new suitcase and 2 other bags for 15,500 TWD.

The landlord refuses to pay for this, says noone else has complained (but a few weeks ago, I saw a sofa in the corridor, same brand as the sofa in my apartment, which has mold on it, so I suppose some other tenant had complained about mold).
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby hsinhai78 » 30 Jan 2016, 22:25

Lao Tzu wrote:Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

I discovered a few days ago when I cleaned the apartment that there were a lot of mold in the window on top floor and lower floor. Then I had my waistbelt (made of skin) completely eaten up by mold. And now yesterday when I was going to pack my things my suitcase (expensive Samsonite), a computer bag on wheels and a rucksack also had mold on them, so I have to throw all these. And this morning my leather shoes also had mold on them.

So today I bought new suitcase and 2 other bags for 15,500 TWD.

The landlord refuses to pay for this, says noone else has complained (but a few weeks ago, I saw a sofa in the corridor, same brand as the sofa in my apartment, which has mold on it, so I suppose some other tenant had complained about mold).


Mold in Taiwanese apartments is usually a ventilation issue, which can be easily fixed by air circulation and keeping the place dry. Unlike in many European or American homes, it is rarely an issue of mold growing within drywall or between the wall and wallpapers, as walls are generally made from concrete and there are no wallpapers.

You could take your landlord to court, but the burden of proof lies with you, i.e. you would have to prove that there has been mold in the apartment at the time of your move-in, you could not have been possibly aware of it and the landlord did not inform you either. Pretty difficult imho.
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Lao Tzu » 30 Jan 2016, 22:39

The most humiliating now is that this landlord (a young business woman) has been very uncompromising and always very quick to lay over the responsibility and blame on me (she guided me to HSBC after signing the contract so I could withdraw money, I still at first couldn't withdraw money even with my HSBC credit card at HSBC's own ATM, but then discovered I could only withdraw 20,000 TWD, she was very quick then to remark "You did know you couldn't withdraw earlier, didn't you", like insinuating I was at fault, other examples like this, for example "we put in a set of these pink bags in your apartment to get you started with sorting your garbage and recycling as a good gesture from us".

Tomorrow is last day I live here. What happens if I don't pay for electricity and cleaning (3,000 TWD) and just move out earlier? I know I would be in breach of the contract, but would anything else happen except that she gets the deposit on 67,000 TWD? I still loose that anyway, and if I stay and pay, in addition to losing the deposit I have to pay electricity and cleaning fee.
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Icon » 30 Jan 2016, 22:47

Why is the deposit 67k? Are you paying over 30k in rent monthly and the apartment has mold?
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Lao Tzu » 30 Jan 2016, 22:55

I was desperate, came here in the end of November, tried another place first, but had tooth ache (have had it since July when a dentist in Manila didn't do her job properly), and then had a terrible night at a hotel because of this toothache and just got to the airport, was going to take the best first plane back to Thailand. But I decided to give it another try (there is a holistic dentist here in Taipei that follows dr Huggin's protocol, my dental issues are about old amalgam fillings that have come loose and now are leaking together with old root fillings). It's only her who follows this protocol in Asia. I had already been at this place (normal price is 24,000 TWD, but for 1 year contract, then this landlord said "we want to help you in your difficult situation so we decided to let you rent for 6 months, but then the price is 32,000 TWD per month). After having a look, I decided not to take it, was too expensive. But now, I couldn't find anything else, so I signed for 6 months, paying 32,000 TWD per month.

I definitely don't want to leave all things I bought to this landlord, like cooking utensils, rice cooker, beddings etc. Do I have to go out on the street and hand over everything to the refuse lorry? Or can I put everything in pink bags and just put it in the cellar in the recycling room?

This holistic dentist is anyway the best there is in Asia, gave me some small white pellets and the toothache disappeared immediately, even faster than normal Western painkillers. And after a short time when I stopped taking these pellets the toothache is still gone. Now I'm taking the best supplements you can get, not synthetic but natural (although expensive).
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Lao Tzu » 30 Jan 2016, 23:17

The landlord now says I should have reported the mold to her, but it's less than a week since I discovered the first mold. And then yesterday when I was going to pack my things was when I saw my suitcase and 2 bags were eaten up by mold. And they put a mobile air circulator in the corridor about a week ago (didn't have it earlier). So I suspect someone else (or several) have had the same issues as I, especially when this sofa was put out in the corridor for a few days for removal.
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Lao Tzu » 30 Jan 2016, 23:22

Lao Tzu
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby yyy » 31 Jan 2016, 00:54

Lao Tzu wrote:But now, I couldn't find anything else, so I signed for 6 months, paying 32,000 TWD per month.

You can ask her for compensation and cross your fingers, but I don't think you'll get anywhere if you sue just for your luggage.

If you were going to stay longer you would have the right to deduct $3000 from the rent for one month because the landlord overcharged you on the deposit (the maximum deposit is two months' rent). The landlord is also supposed to pay interest on the deposit (a very common violation), and of course the landlord has to give you receipts, so you can deduct the rent from your income tax. If you don't have receipts, that probably means the landlord is a tax evader, in which case you can report her (but you need to provide detailed evidence including her full name etc., and even though you can file a report in English, when the government asks for further information it will probably be in Chinese, and there will be a deadline for providing the information).

Btw I wouldn't say the moldy luggage is your fault, but it's not necessarily the landlord's fault either. If you're used to a drier climate (and I think Thailand is much drier in terms of humidity), Taiwan and nearby locations can be shocking at this time of year. Locals aren't likely to warn you about it because to them it's just a fact of life. :2cents:
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Tempo Gain » 31 Jan 2016, 02:33

Stuff molds in Taiwan. Move on.
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Re: Is the landlord responsible to compensate me for mold having eaten my suitcase etc.?

Postby Icon » 31 Jan 2016, 10:15

Lao Tzu wrote:The landlord now says I should have reported the mold to her, but it's less than a week since I discovered the first mold. And then yesterday when I was going to pack my things was when I saw my suitcase and 2 bags were eaten up by mold. And they put a mobile air circulator in the corridor about a week ago (didn't have it earlier). So I suspect someone else (or several) have had the same issues as I, especially when this sofa was put out in the corridor for a few days for removal.


Eh, it is Chinese New Year. Everyone takes old stuff to the streets for recycling or garbage to start the year with New stuff. So do not read too much into this.

Sorry to hear the landlady was so callous about your situation and overcharged you so bad. I would recommend not to throw away your stuff but rather give it to charity or one of those old ladies, old folk who pick up recycling for a living. Good karma and all that jazz.
Lo urgente no deja tiempo para lo importante. Mafalda.

None of us are getting out of here alive, so please stop treating yourself like an after thought. Eat the delicious food. Walk in the sunshine. Jump in the ocean. Say the truth that you’re carrying in your heart like hidden treasure. Be silly. Be kind. Be weird. There’s no time for anything else.
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