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Selling a House With Damp?

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Are you trying to sell your house but struggling with damp? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. Selling a house with damp can be challenging as untreated damp can result in dry rot.

In this article, we’ll discuss what causes damp, how to identify it, and whether selling a house with damp is illegal.

We’ll also discuss the impact of damp on your home’s value and how to treat it.

So, let’s find the best options for selling your house with untreated damp.

Table of Contents

What is Damp?

Damp is a common issue that affects many homes, and it appears when moisture builds up and can’t escape. If you’re looking to sell a house with damp, it’s essential to understand what damp is and the different types of damp.

Dampness in a property can be caused by poor ventilation, moisture ingress, and defects in the property’s structure. There are three main types of damp rising damp, condensation, and penetrating damp.

Rising damp happens when ground moisture rises up through the walls. Condensation occurs when warm air meets a cold surface, causing water droplets to form. Penetrating damp is caused by water entering the property through external walls or roofs.

Understanding these types of damp will help you address the issue and repair it before selling your house.

What causes damp?

To address the damp issue in your house, it is important to understand what causes it and how to prevent it.

Poor ventilation, lifestyle habits, or moisture penetration can cause dampness in a property.

One common cause is condensation when moisture generated from cooking or showering cannot escape and accumulates on cold walls. This can lead to the growth of mould and a musty smell.

Another cause of damp is moisture penetration, which can be due to dilapidation, wear and tear, or defective brickwork and guttering. Identifying and addressing the underlying cause of dampness in internal walls is important. This may involve improving ventilation, repairing leaks, repointing brickwork, replacing faulty guttering, and applying damp-proof course.

Here is a table summarising the common causes of dampness in a house and how to treat it:

Causes of Damp

Treatment

Poor ventilation 

Improve ventilation by opening windows or installing extractor fans when cooking or showering.

Lifestyle habits 

Avoid drying clothes indoors or ensure proper ventilation when doing so.

Moisture penetration 

Identify and repair any leaks or defects in the building, such as damaged guttering or cracked render.

Condensation

Improve ventilation, use dehumidifiers, and ensure proper insulation to reduce condensation buildup.

Are you trying to sell your house, but struggling with damp? Don't worry, you're not alone. Selling a house with damp can be a challenge, but there are solutions.
Porous walls: as bricks age, they may lose their ability to keep out rainfall, and cracks in the external render can allow water to penetrate your home.

Common causes of damp

If you neglect regular maintenance, your house can develop damp due to leaking pipes or missing roof tiles.

Leaking or blocked pipes can cause water to seep into your walls, leading to dampness and potential damage to the structure of your home.

Missing roof tiles can allow rainwater to enter your attic or upper floors, leading to dampness and the growth of mould and mildew. Another

Condensation can be a common cause of damp, especially in areas with poor ventilation. Moisture from cooking, bathing, and even boiling a kettle can accumulate and lead to dampness if not properly ventilated.

How To Identify It?

Look closely around your property to spot any telltale signs of dampness. Here are some signs to look out for:

  • Rising Damp Signs: Keep an eye out for areas of damp on walls that may look or feel wet. Look for moss growth and peeling plaster as well. These are common indicators of rising damp.
  • Penetrating Damp Indicators: Look for staining on external walls, damp patches on walls or ceilings, wet or crumbly plaster, isolated areas of black mould or spores, and drips or puddles. These signs may suggest that you have penetrating damp.
  • Condensation Clues: Watch out for water droplets on windows and walls, which could be a sign of condensation. If left untreated, it can lead to the appearance of black mould and an unpleasant musty smell.

If you notice any of these signs, it’s important to take action and treat the damp walls to prevent further damage.

Sellers must disclose any damp issues when selling a house, as it is against the law to conceal such problems. It is important to be transparent about any damp walls or mould infestations in your property.
Signs of rising damp through porous wall caused by gaps in brickwork, faulty guttering or pointing needed at the chimney.

Is it illegal to sell a house with damp?

Sellers must disclose any damp issues when selling a house, as it is against the law to hide such problems. Being transparent about any damp walls or mould in your property is important.

Failure to do so can result in the buyer taking legal action against you for misrepresentation. By disclosing the presence of damp, you allow potential buyers to make an informed decision about whether to proceed with the purchase or negotiate the price for the damp proof course. It is essential to provide accurate information about the extent of the damp issue, any remedial actions taken, and whether any guarantees or warranties are in place.

How damp can affect your health?

Living in a damp environment can harm your health, resulting in respiratory problems, allergies, and other associated symptoms. The significance of damp on your health should not be underestimated.

Here are a few ways in which dampness in your bedroom can have a negative effect on your well-being:

  • Breathing difficulties: Dampness can encourage the growth of mould, which releases spores into the air. Inhaling these spores can trigger respiratory issues such as asthma and bronchitis.
  • Allergic reactions: Damp environments provide an ideal breeding ground for dust mites, another common allergen. Exposure to dust mites can cause sneezing, watery eyes, and skin rashes.
  • Weakened immune system: Dampness can compromise your immune system, making you more prone to infections and illnesses.

Living in a damp home can have severe consequences for your health. It is best to quickly address any damp issues to safeguard your loved ones.

How much does damp & mould decrease the value of a property?

If you neglect to address damp and mould issues in your home, they can significantly devalue your property. Untreated damp and mould problems can reduce the value of your home by up to 53%.

Even if you decide to treat the issue, your house can still lose around 5% of its value. The presence of damp and mould often puts off potential buyers as it indicates underlying structural issues and poor maintenance.

To give you a better understanding of how damp and mould impact property value, take a look at the table below:

Severity of Damp and Mould

Property Devaluation

Severe damp and mould with wet patches on walls

Up to 53% 

Moderate damp and mould with visible signs 

Up to 30% 

Mild damp and mould with minimal visible signs 

Up to 10% 

Treated damp and mould with no visible signs 

Up to 5%

How To Treat Damp ?

To effectively treat damp in your house, you should first identify the source of the moisture. Once you have identified the cause, you can take the necessary steps to stop the dampness in your bedroom.

Here are some ways to treat damp:

  • Improve ventilation: Ensure your bedroom is properly ventilated by opening windows or installing extractor fans. This will help to reduce moisture and prevent condensation.
  • Repair leaks: Check for any leaks in your bedroom, such as from pipes or roofs, and fix them promptly. This will prevent water from seeping into your walls and causing dampness.
  • Use dehumidifiers: Consider using a dehumidifier in your bedroom to reduce excess moisture in the air. This can help to prevent dampness and mould growth.

Can you sell a house with untreated damp?

Selling a house with untreated damp is possible, but your price must reflect any damp proofing course and remedial renovations.

It is tricky to sell a house with damp issues to any buyer who needs to apply for a mortgage.

They may either walk away immediately or make a much lower offer, considering the additional cost of treating the problem after purchasing the property.

However, if you still want to sell, three options are available:

Each method has advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to consider which option is best for you.

Options for Selling a House with Unresolved Damp Issues

You may have already tried to sell via an estate agent, with the sale falling through as the buyer cannot secure a mortgage.

Selling via auction means a very low guide price, paying upfront entry, legal fees and searches without guaranteeing success.

Would you sell your house with damp to true cash house buyers?  We’ll buy your house ‘as is’ and complete the purchase within 10 days or at a timescale to suit you. 

We’ll also pay £1,500 towards your legal fees, so why not get in touch with us today?

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Why Sell To Property Saviour?

Here’s why sellers trust us:

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