Escalalting damp problem caused by housing association-managed house next door

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    Escalalting damp problem caused by housing association-managed house next door

    I have new tenants moving in on August 1st and a problem with escalating damp in one of the basement bedrooms. I would have acted much sooner to address the issue, but it was only brought to my attention after I had agreed on the new let.

    The current tenants are moving out this weekend, and the person currently using the affected room said the problem has worsened recently, and he was unaware as he had not used the room for several months.

    We have no water outlets in that part of the house and my builder tells me that the problem is caused by a water outlet next door which is leaking visibly and persistently into the garden of the neighbouring house, and saturating the ground on our side of the party wall too. The damp has now reached the ceiling in the room nearest to the overflow.

    I don’t live near the property and have never met the neighbours, neither have my current tenants. But I have noticed that, since these people moved in next door, the property is increasingly unkempt (e.g garbage in the garden.)

    The property is managed by Clarion Housing Association. I notified them 20 days ago, and they responded 10 days ago, saying they would address the issue. In a follow-up call, they insisted that I should speak to my neighbours, and notify my insurance company. Today, I called them again and they say that, because of some issues with the property that they can't disclose, the problem has been "escalated" to management, who will take up to five days to reply. She told me that the repair had still not been initiated.

    My builder says it’s likely to take only around 30 minutes to sort out the problem, from outward appearances. He is already working to insulate the party wall before my new tenants move in, which will cost £1700. But it’s money down the drain if the cause is not remedied and the potential for further damage is immense, as the ground is completely saturated.

    My insurance policy does not cover this and I need advice about how to proceed—to stem the overflow, even if I can’t recoup the costs of remedying the damage.

    Also, do my current tenants have any liability for not reporting the issue earlier? And would I be justified in withholding any of their deposit due to their failure to report it?

    Hasn't there been any inspections by the agents, it would be hard to blame the T's for a neighbours leak. I'm surprised your insurance doesn't cover it, you can either make a claim on the neighbours insurance or you would have to sue them. You should contact the neighbour if this property is tenanted then use the Land registry to obtain the details, and have a chat with them, if it can't be sorted out, as there's only so much you can do on your side of the fence, otherwise if you don't sort out the root cause it will become even more costly.


      You didn't hear this from me but...

      I'd send my plumber round with a new tap, saying the 'landlord' sent him round.


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