Condensation/ Reasonable Demands

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    Condensation/ Reasonable Demands

    Hi all,

    Am new to this landlordy thing and am lookg for some advice please as I can't see any other posts relating to my quandry.

    My tenant moved in 2 weeks ago and phoned me last night saying that the glass shower screen is not sufficient to stop water escaping from the bath (I am going to buy a shower pole and curtain) and that black mouldy patches have appeared on the bathroom ceiling even though she opens the window. I am also going to buy a damp trap but should I be the one to go around and scrub the mould off the ceiling (there was none there when I moved out)?

    She also says that I should fit a cooker hood/ extractor fan in the kitchen as it's open plan and even though she open the window when she's cooking the whole room steams up and the walls are damp because of this.

    I lived in the property last winter and did not have this problem and on another forum someone was quoted £1500 to fit a hood.

    Is it reasonable not to fit a cooker hood or should I be looking to get this done? Is buying a dehumidifier, advising her to open the window and not dry clothes on the radiators an adequate solution?

    I have already lowered the rent by £35.00 a month as she was desperate for accommodation and LHA requirements etc.

    Any help/ advice would be gratefully accepted.

    Thanks

    #2
    I too have a condensation causing tenant.

    I have looked at a positive pressure device fitted into the loft which brings the warm air out of the loft (thus reducing heating costs) and this air forces the damp air out of the whole property. It claims to be whisper quiet and costs pennies a day to run - offset by marginally cheaper heating costs.

    The unit I am looking at is £325 plus vat plus fitting - I am guessing my tame electrician will charge no more than £120.

    This is not a recommendation, because I haven't fitted it yet and have no idea how effective it will be, but my research reveals many positive reviews of this kind of system. The one I am looking at is http://www.dryhomecondensation.co.uk/homeowners.html

    Comment


      #3
      See, if I was to get one of these would I beable to increase the rent over a period of a few months to recoup the additional expense?

      Keep me posted if you get this one fitted as I am weighing up all options at the moment!

      Comment


        #4
        You won't be able to increase the rent over the fixed term - your tenant has a contract at £X for x months.

        Think of it as an investment in protecting your own property, it has a 5 year guarantee iirc and they claim it protects decor from moisture damage too - lowering those costs.

        Who knows, it may make it easier to let the place next time round too

        Comment


          #5
          Two weeks and she's getting mould patches?

          Well she obviously isn't opening the window long enough. I put a sticky label on my rental flat window, saying it needs to be left in the vent position for 12 hours after bathing.
          To save them chiming in, JPKeates, Theartfullodger, Boletus, Mindthegap, Macromia, Holy Cow & Ted.E.Bear think the opposite of me on almost every subject.

          Comment


            #6
            There is mixed feedback on this forum, but this page shows feedback from someone who has actually installed one (the others seem to be working off anecdotal evidence) http://www.diynot.com/forums/viewtop...10195&start=20

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by JK0 View Post
              I put a sticky label on my rental flat window, saying it needs to be left in the vent position for 12 hours after bathing.
              12 HOURS??? That's unreasonable.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by bellysaysumsh View Post
                12 HOURS??? That's unreasonable.
                Apologies -- I missed the word "vent" and read your post to mean the window itself must be left open for 12 hours.

                Comment


                  #9
                  It's definitely something I'll have to look into. I'll have to wait for her HB to be put into payment first and see if I can find a sparkie who's not going to rob me blind.

                  Am thinking my tenant is going to keep asking for things to be done. The day she picked the keys up she asked if the front door could be carved up to put a cat flap in...

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Snorkerz View Post
                    I have looked at a positive pressure device fitted into the loft which brings the warm air out of the loft (thus reducing heating costs) and this air forces the damp air out of the whole property. It claims to be whisper quiet and costs pennies a day to run - offset by marginally cheaper heating costs.
                    Interesting.

                    Why would you get warm air from the loft (in winter) though? Assuming the ceiling is properly insulated it should be pretty much outside ambient temperature up there - it certainly was in my own loft when I had to go up there the other day! In fact a couple of contributors to the 'diynot' link you provided later did mention the influx of cold air as a disadvantage... that being the case, I think tenants will switch it off to conserve heat, exactly the same behaviour as not opening the windows anyway.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      I would be very careful about giving into every request othwise you will be making a rod for your own back.

                      Learn to say no.

                      Some properties are more prone to condensation than others but 9 times out of ten it is down to the lifesytle of the tenant. But that doesnt stop you doing certain things to the property to reduce the problem such as:

                      1 Supply a good condensation info sheet to the tenant such as
                      http://www.ceredigion.gov.uk/utiliti...&langtoken=eng

                      2 Fit air bricks

                      3 Paint walls and ceiling in affected rooms with a good quaily bathroom anti mould paint.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by Ericthelobster View Post
                        Interesting.

                        Why would you get warm air from the loft (in winter) though? Assuming the ceiling is properly insulated it should be pretty much outside ambient temperature up there - it certainly was in my own loft when I had to go up there the other day! In fact a couple of contributors to the 'diynot' link you provided later did mention the influx of cold air as a disadvantage... that being the case, I think tenants will switch it off to conserve heat, exactly the same behaviour as not opening the windows anyway.
                        Much of what you say is right, however, hot air does rise, and forcing damp air out of the property has to be a good idea! I think location may be an issue, apparently the cool air is only detectable immediately around the unit - so siting over a stair well for example would reduce the notice-ability. It is also adjustable so need not run at any more 'blow' (technical term ) than necessary.

                        It does (like the moisture sensitive fans) need it's own spur and a switch, but I am not sure if it's switch could be sited in the loft cavity to dis-encourage the tenant from casual operation. I must admit that this point is one that has delayed my own decision on this.

                        Again, not a recommendation, just a product I have considered for myself.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by Ericthelobster View Post
                          Interesting.

                          Why would you get warm air from the loft (in winter) though? Assuming the ceiling is properly insulated it should be pretty much outside ambient temperature up there - it certainly was in my own loft when I had to go up there the other day! In fact a couple of contributors to the 'diynot' link you provided later did mention the influx of cold air as a disadvantage... that being the case, I think tenants will switch it off to conserve heat, exactly the same behaviour as not opening the windows anyway.
                          I have one of these waiting to install, which was £100 less than Snork's version.

                          Typically these have a frost cut-out, so stop ventilating if the loft goes below say 5C, and a loft will always be a little warmer than outside, so warmer air coming from a ceiling vent beats outside air coming through a trickle vent.

                          Locations of the ceiling vents are quite tightly specified to avoid draughts, and would be in the hall or landing ceiling.

                          Normally they can be wired into a lighting circuit, with afaik no off-switch downstairs, unless they are the posh variety with a heater which can heat the incoming air a little if it is too cold. In that case they can't go into the lighting circuit.

                          I have one waiting to install.

                          ML
                          Refer Mad Regulators to Arkell vs Pressdram.

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Ok, having been around there this afternoon I would say she's not really opening the windows. The bathroom window was opened about 1 inch same with the kitchen window while she was boiling saucepans on full pelt with no lids on. The heating must have been on full whack too as it was hotter than the sun in there.

                            I am disappointed about the level of mould growing on the ceiling in the bathroom and I have said they need to scrub it with bleach and I will provide anti mould paint. They have also taken down the glass shower screen but we have put a shower pole and curtain up. Am thinking though that she should replace the shower curtain as and when that goes mouldy too.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              My 2p:

                              1. Definitely provide an extractor fan vented to he outside for the kitchen area.

                              2. If damp patches in bathroom began to appear within 2 weeks of her moving in, there's a chance the spores may have been in place already. Her failure to ventilate will not have helped, however.

                              3. You could just board the bathroom ceiling with PVC tongue and grooved 'cladding'. Sounds naff, but is actually not as bad as it sounds. Mould proof and saves the decor.
                              'Pause you who read this, and think for a moment of the long chain of iron or gold, of thorns or flowers, that would never have bound you, but for the formation fo the first link on one memorable day'. Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

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