DAMP SURVEYS IN BIRMINGHAM: FAQ
With the demand for damp surveys growing, we take a look at several questions commonly asked by our customers.
If you need to know more about Damp Surveys in Birmingham, you’ve come to the right place.
Let’s begin with the most common questions and answers.
HOW MUCH DOES A DAMP SURVEY FOR MY HOUSE COST?
The cost of a damp survey in Birmingham varies depending on the size of the house, how many rooms it has, and how many areas of concern there are.
Damp surveys costing less, or offered for free, could well be priced lower to up-sell additional services or damaging chemical DPC (Damp Proof Course) injection.
These services are often unnecessary or damaging to your home.
Damp Surveys in Birmingham: FAQ
WILL DAMP BE PICKED UP IN THE SURVEY?
A professional building surveyor will use thermal imaging equipment, such as a Flir thermal imaging camera to help him locate the source of the damp problem.
During the survey, the surveyor will investigate the true cause of the damp and detail their findings in a comprehensive report.
ARE DAMP SURVEYS FREE?
There’s a saying that goes, “if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is!”. The same goes for free damp surveys.
Some companies offer free damp surveys but often you’ll find they are carried out but unqualified salespeople, whose intention is to upsell another service or product, making the free damp survey worth their while.
More often than not, a free damp survey will result in recommendations to have some type of damp proofing work carried out, either using chemicals, or some construction work.
This is rarely needed and can cause unnecessary, and costly damage, to your property. Most damp issues can be resolved easily and with minimal cost.
WHO CAN CARRY OUT A DAMP SURVEY?
The most common person to carry out damp surveys is a surveyor or a damp specialist.
A damp surveyor will often have years of knowledge and experience detecting the true cause of dampness.
However, some people claiming to be specialist damp surveyors are salesmen trying to sell you additional services or products, which, are often not needed.
It is advisable to instruct an independent damp surveyor who doesn’t have any financial association with any of the recommended works or any builders.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO FIX DAMP IN MY HOME?
An independent damp surveyor may identify the true cause of damp and the only recommendations offered are to make minor changes in your daily routine.
On the other hand, if your damp issue has been left for some time, work may be required on the house to repair and eliminate the damp problem.
The cost to eradicate damp in your home could cost anywhere between £100 and £3000.
This is why it is recommended to resolve damp issues sooner rather than later and get a damp survey carried out.
Remember to always look for an independent damp surveyor in Birmingham, rather than a damp proofer or builder.
IS DAMP COVERED ON MY HOME INSURANCE?
It’s unlikely your home insurer will cover your home for damp unless it has been specifically added. It is down to the owner to ensure the property is in a good state of repair. If in doubt, contact your insurance company and enquire.
Damp insurance cover may be an option that can be added to your policy, however, the insurer may ask for an independent damp survey to be carried out first.
WHY DO HOUSES IN BRITAIN GET SO DAMP?
Why are British houses damp? Houses in England get so damp due to a combination of the British nation having some of the oldest housing stocks in Europe, along with damaging building practices.
Solid single-skin brickwork, which makes up much of UK housing, is more prone to damp than double skin with cavity wall properties.
Old heritage-style houses suffer from damp more than modern built homes, due to the older materials used, and lack of knowledge regarding damp prevention at the time when they were built.
WILL A DEHUMIDIFIER GET RID OF MY DAMP ISSUES?
A dehumidifier is designed to capture moisture by using a simple system that freezes the moist air and collects it into a sealed container.
A dehumidifier alone may solve condensation issues but may not resolve damp problems unless you have identified what caused the damp in the first place.
An independent damp surveyor will be able to find the true cause of the damp problem in your home.
DOES RISING DAMP EXIST?
The simple answer is no. Rising damp is a common phrase used by the chemical industry to make money selling chemicals that are unlikely to be needed in your home.
If rising damp existed, wooden bridges would be rotten, houses in Venice would have deteriorated many years ago, and concrete bridges supported by pillars in water would be saturated.
Rising damp is a fallacy, it’s nothing more than a myth. The former chairman of RICS (Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors) Stephen Boniface, wrote an interesting article on the very subject.
You can read the article by clicking the link. https://www.architectsjournal.co.uk/archive/rising-damp-is-a-myth-says-former-rics-chief#:~:text=Stephen%20Boniface%2C%20former%20chairman%20of,a%20complete%20waste%20of%20money’.
HOW MANY HOMES IN BIRMINGHAM ARE AFFECTED BY DAMP?
It is reported that at least 1 in every 5 homes in Birmingham is affected by damp issues.
If damp is left untreated, it can lead to unsightly black spores, mould, and damage to the structure of the building. Aside from the fact that damp is unattractive and a nuisance, it can cause health problems, such as asthma, irritation, headaches and rashes.
HOW DO I KEEP MY HOUSE DAMP FREE?
Damp is caused by a build-up of moisture or condensation that has nowhere to go.
To reduce dampness and moisture in your home, ensure you have good ventilation. Ensure that extractor fans are working and adequate for the room.
Avoid drying clothes in areas where there is no or little ventilation. It is also advisable, when using a tumble dryer, to ensure adequate ventilation is provided.
Most damp problems in Birmingham are caused by poor ventilation in the home.
CAN I SELL A HOUSE WITH DAMP PROBLEMS?
The simple answer is yes, you can sell a house with damp issues in your home.
However, the extent and severity of the damp problem may affect the market value of your property.
If in any doubt, seek advice from a professional independent damp expert, who will be able to advise on your options to remedy the damp issues.
A damp surveyor will be able to provide useful advice that would resolve the damp issue, and may subsequently increase the asking price.
CAN I HIDE MY DAMP ISSUE FROM A DAMP SURVEYOR?
If you are intending to sell your property and are aware of a damp issue and attempt to underplay or hide a damp issue, it may cause you more problems than you bargained for.
Some professional damp surveyors, such as Alpine Surveys, will use thermographic cameras to detect damp, so no matter how hard you try and hide it, it will be visible through the thermal imaging camera.
Furthermore, if a professional damp surveyor suspects a deliberate attempt to hide damp, he will no doubt intensify his investigative techniques.
When buying a house, it would be beneficial to the potential purchaser, to know that damp issues can’t easily be hidden!
WHAT HAPPENS DURING A DAMP SURVEY IN BIRMINGHAM?
The damp surveyor, or inspector, will, first of all, carry out a thorough inspection of the external areas of the property, including,
- The roof
- Brickwork or stonework
- The ground around the property
- Windows and doors
He will also check internally for damp, focusing on all the rooms one at a time.
As he moves from room to room, he will use a thermal imaging camera, along with his knowledge and experience, to detect signs of damp.
Areas of damp inspection internally include, (but are not limited to)
- Roof spaces
WHY DOES EVERYTHING FEEL DAMP IN MY HOUSE?
A common form of damp is often caused by inadequate heating and ventilation.
This occurs when household activities such as cooking, tumble drying or even showering, raise the level of humidity in the home.
The warm air condenses on colder surfaces, such as windows and walls, creating condensation and moisture in the air, as well as on your clothes and furniture.
Damp Surveys in Birmingham: FAQ
For more advice on how to deal with damp issues, or if you would like a damp survey in Birmingham, contact Alpine Surveys on 0330 333 9238.
Independent expert damp and building surveys were carried out in Birmingham, Worcester, Wolverhampton, Walsall, West Bromwich, Solihull, Cannock, Telford, Leicester and surrounding towns.