Damp/Mould

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    Damp/Mould

    Tenant has reported issues with damp/mould. There is a lot of belongings in the rooms which may in part be contributing to the issue. Tenant is unhappy at request to clear rooms to allow contractor room to work as apparently tenant is disabled and unable to lift heavy things. Is this request unreasonable?

    #2
    What is your contractor going to do?

    Another one for a s21 notice I think, and think carefully about having such tenants in future.

    Comment


      #3
      Jko think carefully about having which such tenants?.

      All the op has stated is that they are disabled and can't move furniture.

      The cause of the mould has yet to be established as to whether it is being caused by the tenant and the fact the has employed a contractor indicates it isn't.

      I agree a section 21 if it's proven to be caused by the tenants actions but until then I think it's really unfair that as landlords we automatically assume it's the tenants fault.

      For the OP if you know the tenant is disabled then it probably is an unreasonable request. Could you not offer to move the furniture for them?

      Comment


        #4
        T pays for someone to move/clear furniture.

        Comment


          #5
          Wright76,

          The OP has stated the room has a lot of belongings in it. I would take this to mean personal items to an individual not furniture. If this is the case then the T was able to get them in the room in the first place.

          I agree with mariner that the T pays to remove their belongings and the LLs contractor can deal with furniture - unless the damp/mould is the fault of the LL.

          The fact a contractor is involved only indicates that repair action is being taken. Its too big a leap to assign any liability based solely on this. It is just as likely that, having had a previous experience where it took months to ressolve an issue caused by a T that the LL has taken the view to repair and argue about it later.

          I agree it is wrong to automatically assume that it must be the Ts fault.
          There is always scope for misinterpretation.

          If my posts can be interpreted in two ways, one that makes you feel angry and one that doesn't, I meant the latter.

          Everyday is an opportunity to learn something new.

          Comment


            #6
            If I may make a small contribution from my many years of experience with damp/mould. You DO NOT need to spend money on a contractor if your house is externally watertight and it is not rising damp from foundations. If I assume that the roof of your property and that firewalls etc are watertight then I suggest you do the following. Establish exactly where in the house the mould and damp is?Almost certainly the answer will be ceiling levels in the colder parts of the house eg upstairs bathroom/bedroom (next to external walls) but not downstairs then the issue is very simple to resolve. Get air flowing through the house!!! If there are no extractor fans in the kitchen (which is a classic source of damp) and they do not close kitchen door whilst cooking then the water vapour from cooking will rise up through the house and condense onto the coldest part of the upstairs usually bathroom. Keep the bathroom window open as much as possible but only partial. If there is a attic hatch (hopefully on the landing) that opens INTO the loft space just pop one side of it up and insert a narrow spacer (10mm will do) between the edge of the hatch and the batten upon which it sits when shut. This will allow vapour laden ed air to escape from the house. Open window in bathroom will also help. Do they dry washing on radiators/ That is another primary source if mould again ventilation is the answer. In warmer weather keep upstairs doors open to dry out. The damp and mould are only occurring because your walls are already saturated and can absorb no more "water". So a bit long winded but key to it is nine times out of ten ventilation!!! Do not advise use damp selants mould cleaners etc as they just ADD more moisture to surfaces just get the ventilation right! Drying out will take up to a month depending on severity. Contractors will do no more than the guidance I have provided. Good luck

            Comment


              #7
              So the tenant has now allowed access & we have had the fan replaced in the bathroom & mould treated & ceiling painted. Incidently, the tenant showed the painter photos taken inside the loft. The tenant or some other able-bodied member must have been able to climb up the loft. I can't be sure about the root cause of the damp but the property is a large 5 bed house, not a small flat. Tenant is saying they are all having health issues & threatening legal action. Handyman says the loft insulation could be the root cause so we had roof vents fitted, gutters/roof checked & mastic applied around the windows. I also intend to provide tenant with a dehumidifer. We residing in the property a number of years ago & therefore believe as the last poster commented that root cause may be due to tenants lifestyle. However, the loft insulation was installed after we had moved out.

              Comment


                #8
                Is this in Scotland?
                I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...

                Comment


                  #9
                  Is the tenant a Vaper? I learned the hard way when I came back from holiday that if you have a well insulated room that you vape in, it can cause extremely severe mould. I had to throw out a sofa, but it was my own vape usage so couldn't really blame anyone else!

                  A massive downside of insulating a property, especially some older ones, is that you need to air the house more than you did previously. If the tenant has had the insulation fitted themselves or requested that you do so (EPC recommendations etc) then you need to make them aware they need to air the house more. Which can be a pain because 'once' the mould and damp reaches a certain point, it's your responsibility to remove it and rehouse the tenant while the work is done.

                  If the tenant moans about this, just put it in writing and if they complain again you have evidence of recommended action to be taken.

                  Also issuing notice in these circumstances can cause more trouble than good, especially if the tenant knows their stuff.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    the handy man is wrong,wrong ,wrong!!! It will not be the loft insulation but roof vents should be fitted as routine. I repeat my previous comment and on the basis that it is not rising damp or penetrating damp it is all about effective ventilation throughout the house. Dehumidifiers do not solve issue they merely suck the water out of a room which is promptly recontaminated once switched off! If you would like to advise precisely where the damp is in the house I will be able to advise further. Repainting ceilings will not solve the issue neither will treating the mould. View it a bit like a leaking tap until your fix the washer then the tap will go on leaking! In this case for tap read water vapour!!

                    Comment


                      #11
                      The damp is apparently present in bathroom and 2 bedrooms. I did request photographs from the letting agent but they haven't been forthcoming.

                      Letting agent has indicated that there are at least 4 adults and also 5 children living in the property. Property has 5 bedrooms and it appears that tenant is using the dining room as a 6th bedroom.

                      See information from letting agent:
                      'Good Afternoon,

                      I am aware that the branch have been out to the property already.
                      They were aware that this needed done asap, so have been to the property.

                      Good Afternoon

                      I have been advised that the property is very crowded with furniture and items.
                      Their was no sign of major damp issues as the Tenant had advised she had cleaned the walls.
                      I believe the boiler cupboard is full of items which would deem this unsafe.
                      My colleague also advised that the property has washing hanging up everywhere, which i would believe would not help the mould/damp.
                      Their are 5 beds in the property one being a bunk bed, so she has 5 children and herself,
                      also she has advised that she could not see a room used as a dining room? She called the tenant back and they advised that the dining room is another bedroom.

                      So we are lead to believe that their are at least 3 adults and herself in the property, if their are more adults in the property these people should have been put onto the lease.'

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Baldie 91 wrote:
                        'Also issuing notice in these circumstances can cause more trouble than good, especially if the tenant knows their stuff.'

                        This is my concern. Contractor has indicated that she knows the system well. Tenant tends to play the disability card/health issues when communicating with the agent.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          breach of tenancy? overcrowding, is it now an HMO?

                          in support of other answers discussing ventilation, you say you fitted a new fan in the bathroom, BUT what sort of fan, size, how much air does t move, is it on a timer or humidity sensor. too many people fit the basic 'domestic bathroom fan' when they should be fitting a much higher standard (yet at not much more cost money wise, but proportionally 3 or 4 times the cost for the unit itself)

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by squirrel103 View Post

                            Letting agent has indicated that there are at least 4 adults and also 5 children living in the property.
                            So all four of them are too disabled to move their cr*p, but not too disabled to procreate five times? Guess you can see why I suggested the following:

                            Originally posted by JK0 View Post
                            Another one for a s21 notice I think, and think carefully about having such tenants in future.
                            You want to do it before the inevitable complaint to the council about 'damp', or you will never get rid.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Damp in bathroom and two bedrooms (which I bet are upstairs!) is classic , absolute classic lack of air movement through the house. The reason that the damp is in those three locations is that they are usually the coldest part of the house in comparison to the rest. I "bet" the damp is in the corner of those rooms adjacent to a window. Does the double glazing have vents fitted if yes I bet they are closed! If not then worth fitting which can be done on a self help basis but not rush. However that will not solve the problem of drying clothes on radiators and not having windows open enough especially upstairs. In passing if there is a loft hatch on the landing then cut in a fit a 9 x 9 open vent again they are as cheap as chips and easy to fit. All of the measures I suggest will mitigate the problem which includes drying clothes OUTSIDE! In summary open the wretched windows upstairs and keep doors open to get ventilation moving through the house at the same time once the air movement starts then put a S21 on it as these people are taking the mickey and disrespecting you. The problem is ENTIRELY of their own making, ENTIRELY!! It is NOT an HMO if it is all of one family but with another bedroom converted suspect there is more than one family therefore it is a HMO. Agent needs sacking at first available for allowing overcrowding to occur. As others suggest it is always prudent to check yourself before agreeing with a agent`s recommendation. You can even run your own check via this site!!! In case you missed it.........S21 asap and find a new agent once house empty!!!

                              Comment

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