Hassle-free elimination of mould provides relief for Elkien customer and its residents

When one of its apartment complexes experienced an outbreak of mould, housing corporation Elkien immediately turned to Polygon. On completion of the mould treatment it wasn’t just the residents who breathed a sigh of relief, but also Elkien’s maintenance manager, Eise Fokkema.

A loose drainpipe. That's all it was. But this one small fault caused rainwater to seep into the façade of the apartment complex in Sleedoornstraat, Leeuwarden, penetrating three floors. Fortunately, Eise Fokkema, who has worked as a technical advisor for daily maintenance at Elkien for thirty years, knew that Polygon was capable of removing large-scale mould. He was already familiar with Polygon through his work with the Salvage Foundation for victims of fire.

On call help
Tjeerd Landman, project manager at Polygon, was the man charged with ridding Elkien's residents of the mould. Following his assessment – “an accumulation of mould on the walls of six apartments” – he mobilised a fleet of drying equipment the next day, with two units placed in each apartment. The dryers operated at full capacity for an entire month. Eise’s explained how his involvement was minimal, “Tjeerd immediately offered to keep in contact with the residents. I didn't have to give it a second thought. The residents really appreciated having a single point of contact and it also made life easier for my colleagues in the contact centre.” They agreed that Tjeerd would keep Eise up to date on the progress, “I received regular, clear reports with details of the current moisture values.”

Monique Aalbers was one of the residents affected. “Tjeerd provided a clear explanation of what I could expect over the coming weeks and how I could effectively let the equipment do its job. He also gave me his number in case I had any questions. I only needed to call him once when I had to move a fan.”

Monique wasn't the only resident to contact Tjeerd during this period. “For example there was someone who wanted to know if he was entitled to compensation for the power consumed by the drying equipment. Which was a matter for Elkien, of course. I called Elkien on his behalf and passed their answer back to him.” Tjeerd was also responsible for arranging appointments with the residents. Monique says, “I work on a weekly schedule so it isn’t until Monday that I know when I will have time free each week. Tjeerd was able to integrate effortlessly with my hectic agenda.”

Professional mould removal
Once the property was dry, the mould treatment started. Which was no mean feat, as Tjeerd recalls, “You can't solve a problem like that with a few sprays of mould remover from the kitchen cupboard. You have to remove mould safely. At Polygon, such work is carried out only by specially certified experts. It involves repeated misting and cleaning, with a sealing process at the end. We always use an extraction system to prevent nuisance odours for the residents.”

Finally, a fresh coat of paint erased any traces of the water damage and mould. Elkien employees would normally complete jobs like this but chose instead to use Polygon. According to Eise, “Tjeerd informed us that Polygon has a professional painter on its books. I decided to leave it up to them to finish the job.”

Eise looks back on the project with satisfaction, “Don't let Japke-D Bouma hear me say this, but I was ‘sidelined’ throughout the entire process. It’s not usually the nicest of words to use, but it’s the truth. Polygon also feels like a regional contractor that knows how northerners think. They do not promise what they can’t deliver, or dress things up to look better than they are. We speak the same language. Literally and figuratively.”