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Question

England | Housing Health and Safety Rating System (England) | Responsibilities and Liabilities (England)

Mould in a property – threatened with Environmental Health

18 May 2021 | 3 comments

I have a modern flat, built 2018, which only has windows on one side of the building.  Tenant has complained about excessive mould for the past 18 months.  We have installed additional mechanical extractors in both bedrooms and tested the building for water leaks etc and cannot stop the problem.  Tenant says they keep the trickle vents on windows open and during summer keep the windows open however they frequently have their curtains closed.  Tenant is now threatening to go to Environmental Health due to asthma, anxiety etc.  Because I can prove I have taken steps to try and resolve the problem should I be concerned?  I personally think it’s tenant lifestyle, neither work, closed windows etc so creating a lot of moisture in the flat (3 occupants).  The property met all building control approvals when built.

Answer

3 Comments

  1. guildy

    If they do go to the local authority, the council will most likely do a HHSRS assessment.

    Like you suggest, the property is new and you’ve added additional items since then.

    We therefore wouldn’t be concerned. They may serve a notice with additional works but it’s hard to think what more can be done. In any event from the sound of it, if they had further ideas, you’d probably be open to them and willing to make further improvements.

    There’s nothing you can do to stop them going to the local authority in any event so guess there’s not much point worrying about something that can’t be stopped!

    One thing to have in mind, if they go to the authority and if the council then serve an improvement notice with suggested works, you won’t be able to serve a section 21 for six months after the works notice. Again, from the tone of the question, it doesn’t seem you’re interested in serving notice and would rather the problem fixed so this shouldn’t be an issue.

  2. deane21

    Hi

    Would it be worth seeing if any of the other properties in the block got problems

  3. guildy

    We’re not entirely sure if that would gain anything.

    Even if they did have a problem, it wouldn’t alter the fact that the tenant is entitled to a damp and mould free premises. But, once everything has been done by the landlord and it’s shown it’s condensation due to tenant actions, that wouldn’t be the landlords duty.

    If there were no other problems in other flats that might be helpful as evidence that structurally the building appears to be satisfactory but on its own, not conclusive.

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