Understanding the issue

Early detection of damp & mould issues in council housing & rental properties

November 6, 2023

In the housing sector, combating mould and damp issues has long been a persistent challenge. Condensation, poor ventilation, outside conditions and structural flaws contribute to these problems, impacting tenant health and wellbeing

It would be advantageous for landlords to be able to detect the early stages of damp and mould development. Early recognition of the issue could prompt timely action, mitigating potential long-term property damage and ensuring the wellbeing of tenants. Landlords could proactively uphold the living standards of their rental properties, fostering a positive tenant-landlord relationship and creating a more conducive and comfortable living environment.

But it’s not a simple task. Detecting the early stages of damp and mould can be quite challenging, especially when considering various factors such as tenants’ reporting behaviour, the hidden nature of these issues, and the demanding nature of property management. It requires a comprehensive understanding of the intricacies involved and a proactive approach that involves consistent and thorough property checks, tenant education

Managing large residential property portfolio

Managing a large portfolio of properties adds another layer of complexity to the issue. In such cases, the challenge of promptly identifying and addressing damp and mould issues becomes even more daunting. The sheer scale of the properties to oversee, coupled with the diverse needs and behaviours of tenants, can significantly hinder the ability to detect these issues early. While managing a portfolio of properties, there is a heightened risk of inadvertently missing at-risk tenants who might be living in hazardous environments due to undetected damp and mould issues. The sheer scale of properties under management can make it challenging to give each unit the necessary attention it requires. 

Ensure the wellbeing of the tenants

The responsibility for addressing damp and mould issues in a property falls to the property owner, housing management company or council. These organisations are accountable for maintaining the habitability and safety of the properties they oversee. Tenants have rights that ensure the property is kept in a good state of repair. The council or housing association is expected to take necessary measures to rectify any damp and mould issues promptly to comply with their legal obligations and ensure the wellbeing of their tenants.

Given challenges, property management companies, councils or housing associations will benefit from implementing proactive measures, such as educating tenants about the signs of damp and mould, encouraging open communication, conducting comprehensive property inspections, and investing in smart sensor technology for early detection and monitoring of environmental conditions.