Damp and mould in new build flat?

Damp and mould in new build flat?

0:03 AM, 25th January 2023, About 2 days ago 4

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Hello, A friend bought a 1-bed new build flat in Southampton for her daughter to live in while at university. She graduated 3 years ago but the flat has been empty because of severe condensation and mould which make it un-lettable.

She’s been hit with double council tax without any rental income.

She has tried to get the management company to talk to the insurance company but tells me both are useless and she’s even enlisted help from her MP but the problem remains.

She now thinks her only recourse is legal action (or the threat of it) so can anyone recommend a good solicitor who is familiar with cases like this?

Thank you,

Jonathan



Comments

Chris Bradley

10:45 AM, 25th January 2023, About A day ago

Your description raises a lot of questions.
Is the damp from a fault in the building? Have you had someone survey the building for the cause.
Because an empty flat just like an empty car left standing will fill with damp and condensation.
Property needs to be heated and aired to prevent condensation and mould even if it is not lived in.
Also if before becoming empty, due to occupiers habits there could have been high levels of moisture in the air which wasn't dealt with at the time.
Also periodic cleaning and painting with specialist paint can cut down the amount of mould growth.
But establishing the cause of the condensation and damp is essential, and as lease holders (same as tenants) you are required to look after the property to try and reduce any perminant damage. So heat and ventilate, and use of a dehumidifier is essential to reduce the damage caused while the cause of the dampness is established

DAMIEN RAFFERTY

11:04 AM, 25th January 2023, About A day ago

Maybe time to take a good look at the flat and ventilation.
Does the bathroom have a window ?
When you walk into the bathroom does the light and extractor fan automatically ?
Does the fan run quietly in the background for say 20 minutes after you leave the bathroom ?
You can get someone to install a smart extractor fan which may help with the mould and condensation.
You may have to sell the flat at a loss if you can get a tenant or be a landlord

Accommod8

11:47 AM, 25th January 2023, About A day ago

Or have a Positive Input Ventilation unit fitted specifically for flats provided you can get 150mm diameter pipe installed from the outside with permission from your freeholder, unless you happen to own the freehold. So not an option above two storeys usually. We have several doing a great job, and not too noisy. Envirovent and Nu-Aire are two we have used, and have also self-installed in lofts, transforming mould, condensation and musty smells.
I have no association or commission arrangement with them- just know they work in most cases, Envirovent having been the preference in an apartment!
Write a condition at the end of an AST stating that the tenant agrees to pay the approx. cost of £40 per annum for this non-switchable (hard wired) device. These systems push air around a property, shifting stale air. Doors don't have to be open normally to work well.

Anne Nixon

20:58 PM, 25th January 2023, About A day ago

In my experience condensation is an issue that occurs through mismanagement rather than through a fault with a building per se.

I had a tenant move into one of my houses, no damp or condensation with previous tenancies ever, and within six weeks there was widespread mould throughout the property.

I'm working with the tenant to manage the situation and I have also installed a few more vents around the place to aid ventilation. Humidistat fans were there already.

This short video explains it well (hope the posting of this is allowed). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gf3JDjGBmA

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