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Housing Disrepair Case Study: Condensation, Damp & Mould

by Jane Willacey

We were instructed in April 2023 by Mrs D from Kidderminster who had been experiencing ongoing disrepair within her council house since the winter of 2015. We took her case on under a ’No Win No Fee’ agreement.

In December 2015 our client noticed that there was excess condensation and mould growth starting to appear in places on the walls and ceilings in the bathroom, the hall and in two of the bedrooms, the walls in certain areas were staring to crack and crumble and there was mould and damp around the front door where the seals had failed. Our client informed the council via email, telephone and the councils complaints procedure however it took over 19 months for a contractor to attend the property, the contractor painted over the mould, this had been done on three separate occasions since however the mould had always come back and the source of the disrepair had never been investigated.

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.

The councils’ solicitors acknowledged our letter of claim and a joint inspection between both parties nominated expert surveyors was arranged. The surveyors reported that some of the main issues were but not limited to  

  • Low level damp and mould found throughout the property which had caused damage to ceilings, plasterwork, floors and walls originating from a leak in the loft which in turn caused excess condensation to penetrate the property.
  • Blown door seals allowing cold and damp to penetrate resulting in high damp meter readings in the hallway.
  • High than average damp meter readings throughout the property
  • Defective guttering at the rear of the property.

We made a part 36 offer to settle without the need for court proceedings, our first offer was rejected however the other party accepted a subsequent offer of £4700.00 in damages and repairs to be completed within 30 days plus all legal costs recovered from the other side.

Although this claim was small in comparison to most of our housing disrepair cases our client had up until the point of instruction lived with low level damp and a faulty front door which had caused her much distress and frustration and whilst getting her 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: