A  woman says she arrived at her newly rented home in Langley to discover it was in terrible shape, but the property’s landlord left her out in the cold.

“The door was wide open, which was a little worrying, but it didn’t look like anything else had happened so we go inside and the place was just filthy, just grimy, filthy,” Louise Madore said.

Madore, who was moving from Kamloops to Langley with her family, said the house they had rented was missing door locks and there was thick, black mould in some areas.

“It was not just around the windows,” she said. “It was in the walls and it was like, once you got up close you could smell it. It was scary.”

But landlord Amar Sandhu repeatedly dodged Madore’s calls about her family’s worries, she said, even though she had served written notice her family wouldn’t live in the Langley home.

“We kept calling, no answer. Finally the landlord answered, my husband said ‘Look, you were supposed to meet us, you didn’t change the locks, you didn’t have the dumpster removed, you didn’t get rid of any of the garbage, we can’t live here.’ And the landlord just started laughing at him,” she said.

But when CTV reached Sandhu he asserted the home was fine and that it wasn’t mould Madore found – but mildew.

“I said ‘Can you show me where this mould is so I can repair it for anybody else?’ and she never showed it to us,” Sandhu said.

He also said Madore should have known what the condition of the house was before she moved in.

“She saw the house two or three times before they rented the house,” he said.

Sandhu’s name isn’t on the rental agreement and Madore doesn’t have a receipt for the cash she put down for the damage deposit and half a month’s rent, but the landlord told CTV News that he would give her the money back on Monday.

“I was gonna pay this back anyways,” he said. “I’d like to make that clear.”

After being left strapped for cash, Madore said the whole fiasco has taught her to be more careful when renting a home.

“None of our bills are getting paid, our credit’s getting maxed. It’s kind of a scary situation,” she said. “We haven’t rented a place in 11 years so it’s all new to us too.”

Sandhu said he has already rented the house to new tenants.

Landlords and tenants can use advice and documents from the residential tenancy branch’s website to help avoid disputes.

With a report from CTV British Columbia's Penny Daflos