Discuss your damp concerns with me

If you've arrived at this page, you are probably concerned about some damp in a house and don't know what to do about it.

You may have had the damp looked at by various builders over the years who have tried all sorts of different remedies to no avail, or had the house damp proofed only for it to come back again. You might be trying to buy a house but the surveyor has said it has rising damp which must be investigated and treated as a condition of the mortgage.

The chances are, you've searched the internet for advice, and having read lots of articles you are now thoroughly confused by all the conflicting advice and opinions!

Although semi-retired, I still undertake a small number of damp surveys on listed and period houses and am happy to have informal discussions about your damp problems – I no longer carry out surveys on any property built since 1940 and no longer carry out mould/condensation surveys.

Before any damp survey it is a good idea to have a brief discussion about your damp concerns and the building. By the end of the discussion, I would normally expect to have a good idea of whether you would really benefit from an in-depth damp survey. If I don't think a damp survey is your best option, I will either suggest some things you can do yourself or recommend you consult a different type of specialist.

To carry out a proper damp survey, takes up to a day (or several days on large/complex buildings) and requires the use of multiple specialist instruments, some of which are only built to order. Small wonder then that your builder/damp proofing operative, or general surveyor, struggled to diagnose the problems correctly.

At present, I still offer 3 different damp survey packages based on the time needed to survey varying amounts of dampness in houses of different sizes:

  Damp plus Standard damp Basic damp
Time allowed for survey inspection: Up to 5 days Up to 1 day Up to ½ day
Suitable for:
  • Widespread and severe dampness affecting a moderate or large home
  • or
  • Comprehensive damp checks required on a large home
  • or
  • Advice is required prior to extensive restoration or renovation of a sizeable or rambling period home
  • Severe dampness affecting the whole of a modest size home or up to half the rooms in a moderate size (3-5 bed) home
  • or
  • Widespread damp concerns on a moderate size (3-5 bed) home
  • Damp patches affecting a small number of rooms
  • or
  • Severe dampness affecting only 1 or 2 rooms
  • or
  • Widespread damp concerns on a modest size (1-3 bed) home
Interior checks carried out on: Entire house All indicated areas, plus those potentially vulnerable to damp All areas affected by damp patches, plus potentially vulnerable walls
Accessible roof spaces included Yes Only if there is evidence of possible leaks or damp
Checks for floor problems All floors Timber ground floors and floors in areas affected by severe damp Ground floors only
Checks for damp in walls Yes
Checks for timber decay Yes Interior timber only
Checks for salt contaminated plaster Yes
Exterior checks carried out on walls Yes
Checks for roof problems (subject to visibility/access) Yes
Checks for decaying brick and stone Yes
Checks for incorrect ground levels Yes
Checks for maintenance issues that could lead to future damp problems Yes Major issues only
Checks for previous building work that is incompatible with the house Yes Sizeable areas or areas where problems are starting to occur
Comprehensive report with prioritised advice Yes – printed and electronic (pdf) versions are both issued as standard Yes – electronic (pdf) version is standard but if preferred, a printed version can be issued instead
Standard Package price £2500 + travel £800 + travel £500 + travel

My travel for all damp surveys is based on the shortest RAC recommended route from my office at Aylsham in North Norfolk to the survey location. To give you an idea of what this is likely to amount to, here are some approximate travel charges for various locations: Norwich £15, Lowestoft and King's Lynn £45, Colchester and Peterborough £90, Lincoln £110.

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