Guidelines for Participating in the Locations Ratings Project


Buffalo (2)

The Black Hills of South Dakota.





The Locations Ratings section of the Paradigm Change website is designed for mold-sensitized people who already are pursuing mold avoidance to quickly and easily rate locations that they have visited or lived, so that other mold avoiders can learn about their experiences.

Following are some details about the project.


* Only mold avoiders should rate locations.

It is difficult for people who are getting ongoing exposures to mold toxins to rate locations accurately.

Therefore, only mold-reactive people who already are pursuing some kind of mold avoidance may participate.

It is not necessary that participants be doing mold avoidance perfectly, however! They just need to be making an effort to pursue avoidance as best they reasonably can.

In addition, everyone may look at the Locations Ratings Map and read the Locations Ratings Reports for each state.


* Rating locations is designed to be fast and easy. 

Mold avoiders wanting to rate locations will first choose a particular state and provide their selected Locations Ratings user name.

They then will answer two questions about their current level of mold avoidance skill and previous level of illness severity.

Next, they will see a list of towns from the state. For each town where they have spent time, they can click on a star rating.

For some states, rating nature areas such as national parks or state parks will be an option.

Only a few minutes per state should be required to participate in this project.

Participants also may choose to write further comments about their experiences in that state for others to read, but this is not required.


* Choose a user name that does not reveal your identity. 

Although your user name will not be publicly matched to your ratings, it is the intention for this data gathering project that participants should remain anonymous.

You do not have to register your user name. Please just choose a name to use and then try to remember what it is.

If you cannot remember what user name you chose for a particular state, you can look at the “Read Ratings” section for that state to see if any of the user names listed look familiar to you.


* Ratings are based on a standard 5-star rating system.  

The scale is 5 = Excellent; 4 = Good; 3 = Fair; 2 = Poor; 1 = Awful.

Please rate locations based either on their apparent effects on your health or on how much trouble you had to go to in order to stay feeling relatively well in those places.


* Choose your rating based on your best judgment of what the location is like.

The rating should reflect your best guess of how the location would impact your health if you were to live there full-time on a year-round basis.

Only rate those locations where you have spent enough time to be able to make some sort of judgment about whether it would be a good place for you.


* Rate the overall location, not one particular building.

If you visited a location and unfortunately had to spend time in a problem building, that should not necessarily cause you to state that the whole town was problematic for you.

However, if many of the buildings in a particular town appear to be especially problematic, then that does reflect more negatively on the location as a whole and may be appropriately reflected in the town’s rating.

Other environmental aspects of the town such as water quality that have the potential of affecting your health also should be reflected in your rating.

In short, the ratings are meant to reflect the effect that living in the location in general would have on your health if you were to live there all the time, not just your assessment of the quality of the outside air.


* Ratings should reflect your overall assessment of how your health would be affected if you lived in the town all of the time. 

Many towns vary substantially over the course of time in terms of environmental issues by weather factors (including season) or by other factors. Please consider everything that you know about the town in making your assessment of how your health would be affected if you were to live in the town all of the time on a year-round basis.


* Rate only locations that you visited while pursuing mold avoidance.

Please do not rate locations that you visited only prior to becoming a mold avoider.


* Share additional information in the comments box.

You can provide as much information as you are willing to share about the places that you have been, for other mold avoiders to read.

If a town that you would like to rate is not mentioned in the listings, please supply your rating of it with a 1-5 numerical score in the comments box.


* When updating ratings, please re-rate all the towns in the state where you have spent time.

User names are being used for this project so that when people re-rate locations, their old ratings for the state can be deleted.

Therefore, when you update your ratings for a particular state, please supply the same user name that you used previously.

Then, please supply ratings for all the towns in that state that you are able to judge, even if you have rated them before.


* The Locations Ratings Map is periodically updated with new ratings.

The Locations Ratings Map displays in color-coded fashion the average rating for each location that has received two or more ratings.

View the Locations Ratings Map


The average ratings for each color are as follows:

Blue – Excellent (5)

Teal – Excellent/Good (4.5)

Dark Green – Good (4)

Light Green – Good/Fair (3.5)

Yellow – Fair (3)

Orange – Fair/Poor (2.5)

Red – Poor (2)

Fuschia – Poor/Awful (1.5)

Burgundy – Awful (1)


Ratings on the map are listed using the following format. The first number is the average rating, and the second number (in parentheses) is the total number of raters.

AZ Phoenix 3 (15)


* Locations ratings are currently limited just to U.S. states and major international cities.

Eventually the project may be expanded to additional countries. Please let me know if there are particular countries that you would especially like to see included in the project.


Links to rate locations or read ratings are listed on the Locations Ratings Project page of the Paradigm Change website.

Rate Locations or Read Ratings


Please send questions about this project to info at paradigmchange dot me.

Thanks for participating in the project!


Best regards,

Lisa Petrison
Executive Director
Paradigm Change


A section of the Locations Ratings Map as it appeared in June 2017.


Links on this page are in orange (no underlining).