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Housing Disrepair: Active Leaks, Damp and Mould.

by Jane Willacey

We were instructed in November 2021 by Mr U from North London who had been experiencing ongoing disrepair within his council flat since 2019. We took his case on under a ’No Win No Fee’ agreement.

In December 2019 our client noticed several small intermittent leaks coming from the ceiling in both the hallway and bathroom. This was reported to the council who did not provide our client with a response. Our client continued to report the disrepair via email and telephone over the next few years to no avail.

As soon as we took instruction, we sent a detailed letter of claim to the council setting out that they were in breach of express and implied terms of tenancy and/or breach of their statutory and common law duties by not adhering to the clauses outlined in the tenancy regarding the council’s responsibility for the maintenance and repairs of the building and we instructed an expert surveyor to assess the disrepair.

The surveyor reported that some of the main issues were but not limited to numerous small leaks originating from the flat above causing black mould and high damp meter readings in the two affected rooms, damage to plasterwork on both the walls and ceilings and rotten floorboards and door frames.

The councils’ solicitors after viewing our surveyors report and our client’s evidence of numerous reports to the council put forth a part 36 offer to settle out of court, this offer was lower than our valuation of the claim therefore, we rejected their offer and issued court proceedings.

A few days before the trial date the councils’ solicitors contacted us again with a higher offer of £1650.00 to include all repairs to be completed within 60days and all costs recovered from the other side. Our client accepted their offer.

Up until the point of instruction our client had lived with small leaks damp and mould for two years which had caused him much distress and frustration which in turn had a negative impact on his physical health and mental health and whilst getting his home back to a liveable state was the priority the compensation that our client received came a close second.

For more information on how compensation is generally calculated, read our article on this subject: