Top tips for a damp free home

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Damp is a problem that affects many homeowners.  OnTheMarket.com have therefore produced an at-a-glance guide offering top tips for a dry and healthy home.

Tackle rising damp at its source

Rising damp can be both costly to homeowners and adversely affect their health.  Rising damp is caused by groundwater finding its way into a home through stonework or brickwork and can be prevented or treated through a properly maintained damp-proof course.

James Carter, partner at Knight Frank, advises homeowners to: “make sure you have a certificate to show that the damp-proofing has been done to a high standard “.

Look out for ‘tide marks’ on the walls

‘Tide marks’ at the bottom of walls are one of the first signs of a defective damp-proof course.  It is important to source the problem, carry out the necessary building works and, in more serious cases, use a dehumidifier to dry out the affected room.

Maintain the fabric of the exterior of the property

Water can enter a property through walls as well as the roof and floors.  Damaged pointing or masonry can cause damp problems so it is key to look out for potential weak spots and maintain them at an early stage.

Check the guttering is in order

Defective guttering can cause rainwater to run down the side of the building and it may only be a short time before the water will find its way into the property.   Guttering should be checked regularly and any problems such as blocked drainpipes should be dealt with sooner rather than later.

Watch out for black mould

Black mould that forms on either external or internal walls is a warning sign to homeowners that they have a damp problem. This mould can be dangerous as it can attract mites and cause respiratory problems for those living in the property.  Mould eradication kits can be purchased online and should help control the problem.

Remember damp has internal as well as external causes

Boiling a kettle or taking a shower can cause windows to mist, a tell-tale sign of condensation which is one of the most common forms of damp in a home. Homeowners should try to prevent excess condensation within the home and not fail to overlook its harmful consequences.

Consider installing ventilation aids

Ventilation is the best way to stop moisture in the air inside a property lingering.  James Carter advises that rooms should be aired well, even during the winter months by opening windows regularly or by using ventilation fans in kitchens and bathrooms where the problem can be more severe.

Dry washing outdoors where possible

Drying damp clothes on a clothes-horse indoors will intensify a condensation problem.  If it is not possible to dry clothes outside, dry them in a room that is well ventilated.

Temperature control is critical

Condensation is at its worst during cold weather, so it is critical to keep a property warm even when there is nobody at home.  Thermostat-controlled heating systems are the best way to ensure this.

Grants for damp related problems

Grants for tackling damp related problems are often available from some local authorities so it is worthwhile and cost effective to enquire if you are eligible before carrying out any works to a property.

OnTheMarket.com have provided he above guide for information purposes only.  Independent and professional advice should be taken before buying, selling, letting or renting property, or buying financial products.

Full article available OnTheMarket.com: https://www.onthemarket.com/content/keeping-your-home-damp-free/

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