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ACTION JACKSON: Homeowner finds furniture in storage unit covered with mold and mildew

Published: Aug. 11, 2021 at 6:03 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - Andrew Overland of Denham Springs says he rented a storage unit at Life Storage in Hammond in May. He says he paid for a climate controlled unit, which he says he thought would protect his property.

“We get there and unlock it and start moving a few boxes and all of a sudden start seeing this green fuzzy white mold everywhere, and I’m like wait, hold on. In some spots it looked like water had been dripping down and that’s where it was running to, and that’s how the mold kind of accumulated,” said Overland.

Overland estimates has loss to be in the thousands, but he says life storages insurance company was only willing to pay him $500.

“It came up to about 10,000 dollars, and he’s like I know what you have is worth what you’re asking for, but bad news, we can only do $500 because their sub limit is $500 for mold or mildew.”

WAFB reporter Donovan ‘Action’ Jackson reached out to Life Storage. A representative with the company sent the following statement:

At Life Storage, our customer’s satisfaction is our highest priority and we sincerely apologize for the frustration Mr. Overland has experienced. Our team takes all steps necessary to provide our customers with a secure and safe facility to store their belongings and have found that there is no evidence that the damage to Mr. Overland’s items was due to something within Life Storage’s control. We have put him in contact with the insurance carrier, who has worked with him to resolve the situation.

Overland says since WAFB’s inquiry into his claims, he noticed Cruz working on the roof at the Life Storage location where he rented a unit. He says the insurance company has also offered the policy limits of $4,000.

Overland captured images of crews doing roof repairs within 24 hours of WAFB's inquiries.
Overland captured images of crews doing roof repairs within 24 hours of WAFB's inquiries.(Viewer submitted)

“I’m thinking I’m going to have full furniture like we’re moving into this house, everything is going to be set, we’re not going to have to spent another dime, and then now, I’m out money buying furniture that I didn’t think I was going to have to buy.”

Overland says he is now seeking legal advice before accepting the insurance claim. Life storage has not responded to our request for details about the recent roof repairs.

The following are tips for renting a storage unit:

-Check the unit thoroughly for existing mold, mildew, or condensation.

-Understand the terms and sub limits of the storage companies insurance policy. You may also be able to use your own homeowners or renters insurance.

-Consider getting a humidity controlled unit. A dehumidifier may add another layer of protection from moisture in places with extreme humidity.

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