Damp and mould in homes is a common problem. Damp in rental properties can lead to respiratory illnesses, particularly in babies and children, elderly people and people with existing skin and respiratory problems. It can also affect a person’s mental health and increase the risk of infection. NHS guidance warns that inhaling mould spores can cause an allergic reaction in some people including sneezing, runny nose, itchy eyes and skin rashes.
How do you fix damp permanently?
The best way to prevent damp and mould is to ventilate the home properly and heat it properly so moisture doesn’t build up. If you have tried these steps and still have ongoing damp or mould problems you should ask your landlord for an expert’s advice. You should make sure the expert you use is a member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors or RPSA and that they give you a quality report with a warranty.
Landlords have a legal responsibility to make sure rental properties are safe and fit for habitation, including ensuring they are free of damp and mould. Damp and mould can wipe thousands off the value of a property, so fixing them as soon as possible is important for both landlords and tenants.
Tenants who notice any signs of damp or mould in their homes should notify their landlord straight away and make notes on when they saw the problem. This is to help the landlord determine whether the damp or mould is caused by structural issues such as a leaky roof and to allow them to take action against their rental provider at VCAT if they don’t fix the problem.