Problems with damp: who is responsible?


One of the most common issues that many tenants have to deal with in their rented home is damp and condensation. However, understanding who exactly is responsible for dealing with issues regarding damp, can often be somewhat of a grey area. First of all, it is important to understand exactly what type of damp you have in your home, and what has caused it.

What causes damp in my rented home?

There are a number of different types of damp and each is caused in different ways. These include:

  • Penetrating damp
  • Rising damp
  • Condensation damp

Penetrating damp is usually caused by moisture entering the property from outside. This could be due to a leak or rain coming through worn brickwork, or damaged pipes.

Rising damp tends to form at the very bottom of ground floor walls and happens when water from the ground rises up through the bricks and mortar of a building by capillary action, (much like a sponge.)

Condensation damp is usually due to condensation within the house and is often a sign of poor ventilation.

Who is responsible for the damp in my rented home?

If, during your tenancy, you notice that the damp is developing through the walls from outside of your home, it’s likely to be penetrative or rising damp, which is the landlord’s responsibility to fix, along with any redecoration that might be required because of the damp.

However, if the damp has been caused by condensation inside the house, it will generally be your responsibility to manage. You will be expected to reduce moisture inside the room(s) and ensure the house is well ventilated, so the damp doesn’t continue to spread. In some cases, however, if the condensation has formed due to a structural issue with the house, or if you are unable to ventilate the rooms in your home, (for example if the windows don’t open) it may be the landlord’s job to resolve the problem.

My landlord hasn’t dealt with damp in my rented home

If you have complained to your landlord about damp in your rented home, but you are yet to see any action taken, our expert team may be able to help. At CEL solicitors, we understand that yours and your family’s health is paramount, and we believe that everyone has the right to live in a damp-free, safe property.

Contact our expert team of housing solicitors today on 0808 273 0900 or email and know that you are in safe hands!