Whether you’re a homeowner or a tenant, there’s nothing worse than finding damp in your home. Not only can damp make a room feel cold and unwelcoming, but it can also have adverse effects on your health as well as causing structural and weatherproofing issues.
Here, we’re going to take you through some of the impacts that damp can have on your home.
If you’re concerned about damp in your home, please get in touch with us and speak with a structural engineer in Plymouth today.
The Effects of Damp on a Building
Before we explore the impacts that damp can have on your home, it’s important that you know how to recognise damp. The sooner you spot it, the sooner you can deal with it.
What Are The Physical Signs of Damp?
If you notice any of the following, then there’s a chance you may have damp in your home:
- The appearance of mould or mildew on walls, floors or ceilings.
- Dark or discoloured patches on walls or plaster.
- Lifting or peeling wallpaper.
- Excessive condensation on windows.
- Damp or musty smell.
If you think that you have damp in your home, act quickly and contact a professional to conduct a damp report. If you want to know more about what happens during a damp report, read our article.
What Impact Can Damp Have On A Home?
If left untreated, damp in your home can lead to:
- Wood rotting fungi.
- Extensive damage to wall plaster.
- Damage to structural timbers.
In turn, these issues can lead to difficulties selling a home as both mortgage lenders and buyers are often put off.
Health Risks Caused by Damp
Perhaps the most important thing to note is the health ramifications if damp is left unattended in your home.
Studies have shown that people who live in a damp home tend to have frequent colds as well as increased chances of respiratory problems and allergies. Damp can also lead to black mould, exposure to which has been shown to sometimes cause asthma attacks in people with asthma, increase breathing difficulty for those with respiratory issues. This may then lead to weakened immune systems, skin or lung infections.
Legal Requirements of Solving Damp
If your tenant informs you that there is damp in your property, it is your duty to deal with the issue. If you fail to do so or don’t do so to the tenant’s satisfaction, they can then inform the local council who may label the issue a ‘statutory nuisance’. If the damp continues to go unrepaired then the tenants may take you to court, after which the court may order you to:
- Do the repairs.
- Pay the tenant compensation, especially if their health has been affected.
- Pay some or all of the tenant’s legal costs.
You may also be issued with a banning order which means you’re no longer allowed to let the property.
There’s no doubt that damp can be detrimental to both your home and your health, but that doesn’t mean it’s unfixable. Get in touch with a professional if you think you have a problem with damp in your home. The sooner it’s repaired, the less damage it can do.
For more information on protecting your home from damp, why not contact our team today?