Safeugard Europe

Safeguard survey discovers it’s not-so-grim Up North

  • 17 Sep 2019

A poll of tenanted households, conducted by YouGov on behalf of Safeguard Europe, the UK’s leading specialist in damp-proofing and waterproofing technology, has revealed a new North-South divide. 

Renters living in the South are more likely to encounter damp and mould in their homes, compared to those living in the North.

The poll of 1,154 tenants, conducted earlier this year, found that in London, the East of England and the South East, the highest proportion of tenants reported encountering damp or mould while living in rented accommodation at 63%, 60% and 56% respectively.

Meanwhile, fewer tenants had experienced such problems in the East Midlands, the North East and Scotland at 39%, 39% and 40% respectively.

Safeguard Europe

Householders were asked about problems they had come across while living in any rented property; damp and mould emerged as the number one problem, with 51% reporting to have experienced it.

Problems with drainage, water supply, poor ventilation were also prevalent with 32%, 29% and 26% reporting these issues respectively.

The survey was triggered by the introduction of a new law, the Homes (Fitness for Human Habitation) Act 2018 which came into force at the end of March this year.

The act forces private landlords to ensure their properties are fit for people to live in, giving tenants the ability to take their landlords to court if they don’t do so – something that was virtually impossible under previous existing legislation.

The poll also highlighted awareness among renters of their powers under the new legislation is relatively low, with only 35% aware of the Act.

Having been told by the researchers about the new law, 42% of those surveyed said they would be more likely to complain about problems such as damp in the light of the Act.

The question is, what could be the reason for the North-South damp divide? Weather doesn’t appear to be the main factor, as the wettest parts of the UK are Scotland, the North West, parts of the South West and Ireland, according to the Met office.

It isn’t down to the proportions of people renting either. Although more people rent in London than other regions – over half of households according to the Department for Work & Pensions – that isn’t true for the East of England and the South East.

It might be reasonable to suggest that the poorest areas suffer most from damp properties. When income is looked at, the three areas with the dampest rented properties have the highest income – and the highest income from property.

This is likely a function of affordability of rent. This is lowest in southern regions (due to high rents) meaning that renters are forced into lower quality housing

Commenting on the findings of the survey, Safeguard Europe’s MD Hudson Lambert, remarked: “It’s quite shocking to discover that in 2019, such a high proportion of households are living in homes that aren’t safe. Damp and mould aren’t just unpleasant, they lead to health problems, particularly in the young and the elderly.”

Lambert called on landlords in both the public and private sector to ensure their properties were free from damp. Damp in properties is commonly caused by rising damp, rain penetration, leaking pipes or gutters or condensation.

Although damp can be a complex issue, with the causes of damp sometimes misdiagnosed, all types of damp are treatable. 

For full details of the survey, click here 

Contact:

Safeguard Europe,
Redkiln Close,
Horsham,
West Sussex,
United Kingdom,
RH13 5QL

Phone: 01403 210204
Fax: 01403 217529

Visit Safeguard Europe's website

Leave a Reply

Latest news

GAI

Added international expertise brought to Guild leadership

Kaz Spiewakowski and Timothy Perry have been appointed to the Guild of Architectural Ironmongers’ (GAI) executive committee.

Posted in Architectural Ironmongery, Articles, Building Associations & Institutes, Building Industry News, Building Products & Structures, Doors, Recruitment

CUPA PIZARRAS

CUPACLAD is the logical choice for striking leaning housing block

London-based architect, WHAT_Architecture has specified CUPA PIZARRAS’ CUPACLAD 101 Logic as the ideal rainscreen cladding system for a new and unusual housing block in Peckham.

Posted in Articles, Building Industry News, Building Products & Structures, Case Studies, Cladding, Restoration & Refurbishment, Retrofit & Renovation, Roofs, Walls

BMBI

Builders’ Merchants see slower rate of recovery in August - BMBI

The Builders Merchants Building Index (BMBI) report, published in October, shows builders’ merchants’ sales to builders and contractors continuing to recover in August, but at a slower pace compared to the previous two months.

Posted in Articles, Building Associations & Institutes, Building Industry News, Building Products & Structures, Building Services, Civil Engineering, Landscaping, news, Research & Materials Testing