What should you do before buying a house with damp

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Key Takeaways:

  • Addressing Damp Issues Before Purchase: The article highlights the importance of addressing damp problems before purchasing a house. It emphasizes the need for thorough research.
  • Negotiation and Compromise: When faced with damp problems in a prospective property, the article suggests engaging with the seller to address the issue. Negotiations can lead to immediate fixes or a reduction in the purchase price. .
  • Understanding Damp and Its Forms: The content explains the nature of damp, its varied forms such as condensation, penetrating damp, and rising damp. It underscores the importance of recognizing and addressing damp problems early, considering their potential impact on property conditions.

So it’s exciting when you buy a house, but you have no idea that there’s a problem. Is there any way I can buy a house without moisture? The house needs moisture to keep the property clean. Make sure to find the reason for the damp problem and the cost of fixing it.

Contact your damp surveyor for a thorough assessment. Make sure your vendor fixes it before you sell or reduces the purchase price. Many damp problems can be fixed immediately, and a compromise is often achieved between the buyer and sellers. We’ll see how to solve this damp issue more fully.

What should you do before buying a house with damp?


Damp is not ideal, especially if it is visible on the walls, ceiling, or any other space in your house. A damp problem can generate many problems in your home, such as damage to the structure, furniture, and carpets. You should do proper research and ensure the right approach is taken to resolve the issues before buying a new property.

It’s also important to be aware that some health-related diseases can be developed as a result of moisture in the property. Thus, make sure to take all of the necessary precautions before making any final purchase decisions.

You should check the condition of the property before buying it. If there are any concerns about damp, it is best to do some research and find a damp surveyor who can help you with this process. These highly experienced surveyors will analyze the property and draft an inspection report to let you know if there is an issue in that property, as well as the magnitude of said issue.

This article will cover: What is Damp, what forms it can come in, and what considerations to take before buying a House with Damp.

When deciding on the purchase of a new property, professional-grade inspections should be conducted on the condition of the roof, windows, and door seals; the walls should also be inspected for potential moisture infiltration.

If there are missing roof tiles, cracks in the external walls, or any kind of water-logging on the interior walls, these should be taken into consideration.

Now let’s get into the detail…

moisture and damp on the wall

What is Damp?

Damp is essentially wetness, often caused by moisture saturation in the air or condensed on a surface. Therefore, this can hold its presence in the air of an environment or on the physical elements of a structure (i.e. the walls or ceilings). As damp increases, it can cause an area to become unhygienic and unsafe and develop a poor and unpleasant musty smell and appearance.

Damp can come in many forms, including condensation, penetrating damp, and rising damp. Damp involves a process of forming a wet, sticky surface when water and air combine to create a liquid or gas droplet. When these droplets are combined, there is too much moisture in the air, causing condensation damp to occur.

Penetrating damp, another damp problem occurs when moisture is moving laterally through the building elements, such as through the walls, due to leaking pipes inside the cold walls. On the other hand, rising damp issues are usually visible at low levels of the internal walls, caused by moisture rising upward through the permeable material.

This is one of the most common damp problems, affecting mainly basements and ground floor rooms. Both of these forms of the damp, penetrating damp problem and rising damp problem are most noticeable through the black mould that grows as a result.

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Is it worth buying a house with rising damp?

The answer to this question is subjective, as the reasons why someone may choose to buy a house with damp could be different.

However, if there are concerns about the property’s structural integrity due to the damp issues, then resolving these issues needs to be prioritized to allow for the safe occupation of the house sale.

There is no point in wasting your hard-earned money on a property that is guaranteed to get damaged after a certain period of time.

Often the cost and time involved in treating damp issues are going to be minimal in comparison to the total lifetime value of purchasing a property, so this alone should not put you off from purchasing a home. However, so it is worth getting in touch with professionals to discuss remedial works.

damp survey costs

Remember, damp problems are always fixable so get in touch with a damp surveyor and start the conversation now…

Buying a house with condensation

Condensation can occur on any surface, whether it is a windowpane, door, or a piece of furniture. When purchasing a home with condensation, it is crucial to assess the risks and take the necessary steps to protect yourself and your property.

Experts recommend staying on the safe side by starting the discussion early, rather than waiting and risking more severe consequences.

If you’re looking to buy a house with condensation issues, you’ll want to be sure that the house is built to handle moisture. Not all homes are built this way, so it’s important to research the best solution for your specific needs. Some houses are built with water-resistant materials and others have more features that will help protect your home from condensation.

It is often worth asking this simple question: Does the home have sufficient ventilation (windows and air vents) in all rooms and occupier spaces? This ventilation will ensure your space is open enough to allow fresh air to pass through.

What causes condensation?

When the temperature is high enough, vaporized water and air combine to form a liquid. This can develop in any area with solid structures and can result in extremely high saturation damp in said location. For example, condensation, which wears away the surface over time, is common on walls near windows (as the image below shows).

How can we fix the condensation issues?

These issues can be resolved by keeping your kitchen door, and the bathroom door closed while cooking or taking bath. The water droplets rising in the air can cause condensation and if you keep these areas closed, it will help mitigate the issue. You can use pan lids to keep the moisture level inside the pan and not let the droplets escape and condense.

In addition, you can dry your clothes outside your space, like on the balcony, in your yard, or any other area that is outside of your house. Make sure that you vent the washing machine correctly. Improper venting of the machine may cause the water outlet to increase the effect of condensation.

Avoid keeping the furniture near the external walls. This will keep the air circulation intact, rather than blocking the flow which will result in wet layers. Similarly, keep the wardrobes at a distance from the walls. Good air circulation will save you from wet issues.

Have you heard about an extractor fan? Try to install it because it will let moisture escape the property and reduce the humidity levels.


What is a Damp Survey?

A damp survey is an inspection of a building or structure to determine if there are damp-related problems present and to diagnose the specifics of these problems.

This is essential, as a correct diagnosis will in turn allow for the appropriate treatment methodology to be applied. Damp surveys are a type of survey that is used to determine the level of damp in various areas throughout the property.

By taking a damp survey, you can determine the moisture content and discuss what that means. You will get an exact assessment of the level of damp, and it shall help you make the right decision.

Inspection of properties to determine if damp is present

When inspecting properties for damp, it is important to consider all of the factors that affect moisture levels. Let’s explore these factors:

One of the most important factors affecting moisture levels is temperature. In colder climates, moisture levels are higher due to the lack of evaporation. This lack of evaporation could also be linked to the natural ventilation potential in each room of the property.

By identifying the presence or absence of damp, it can be determined whether the problem is widespread or localized. You can then proceed to hire a professional to carry out the proper treatment for the issue.

What are the signs of Damps?

There are many signs of damp, but the most obvious is visible mould – this may be condensation mould located near windows or doors or low-lying (up to 2m from floor level) mould. The latter can be rising lateral damp, but mould found on walls at a different level is more likely to be penetrating damp.

Should I Buy a House That Has Damp?

So it’s exciting when you buy a house but you have no idea that there’s a problem. Is there any way I can buy a house without moisture? The house needs moisture to keep the property clean. Make sure to find the reason for the damp problem and the cost of fixing it.

Contact your damp surveyor for a thorough assessment. Make sure your vendor fixes it before you sell or reduces the purchase price. Many damp problems can be fixed immediately and a compromise is often achieved between the buyer and sellers. We’ll see how to solve this issue more fully.

Frequently Asked Questions about Buying a House with Damp

What about buying a house with penetrating DAMP – is this worth it?

It is usually worth the investment to have a professional assess the property for moisture damage, as this allows the appropriate treatment to support the longevity of your property.

This will be an additional upfront cost associated with your property purchase; however, this cost will become increasingly significant if the issues are left untreated. Address the issues early and get in touch with an expert.

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Get a no obligation FREE quote now. Our team is here to help. Take the first step towards a guaranteed solution by filling out our form below. 

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Should you Buy a house with a damp basement?

Again, if the basement is experiencing damp, it is not a good idea to buy the property if you do not intend to invest in resolving this issue. One example of a resolution is basement tanking, which can remedy the existing damp issues and provide a new damp resistance space.

Those who do not prioritize resolving this issue will ultimately repent for their ignorance. Once the problem escalates, they will be left with no other option and the costs will be much higher.

Who is a damp surveyor?

A damp Surveyor is a person who is certified and licensed to survey properties and check the level of damp in them. They are knowledgeable about these types of issues and experienced in letting their clients know the real situation.

Do these people study the damp Proof Course?

Indeed, they study the course & explore damp problems thoroughly and accurately.

What does a damp surveyor do?

A damp surveyor will assess your property and confidently diagnose the issues at hand, to ensure the most appropriate treatment method can be applied. His main job is to inspect the area and find a possible solution to fix it.

Damp surveys usually cost a fixed fee of £150-£300, which will usually involve a written report that is produced for the client.

Is a damp Survey worth it?

In most cases, damp surveys are an essential first step, as, without an accurate diagnosis of damp patches, there is a risk that the wrong treatment may be applied.

This would ultimately leave the root cause of the issue unresolved. Those who do not choose this step always fall prey to scams and lose large sums of money; their investment gains no value.

How can you ACT on Penetrating Damp problems?

Damp triggers property and health problems, so it is essential to deal with damp as soon as possible. Our company’s damp specialists can help you fix any issues related to damp in your home.

There are several medical cases proving that damp can cause serious respiratory issues. Thus, you must act on it as soon as possible because health should always come first.

Do you need professional help to get this job done?

Yes, we should seek out professionals who can get this job done efficiently. If you are interested in a property and you are a first-time buyer, a professional damp surveyor will help you check whether the property is worth buying or not. You can browse them online and connect to request further details about rising damp.


Thus, after explaining all the details related to damp, how it will affect your property, and how a damp surveyor can help you, this is the right time to take action and hire the right professionals for the job.

Picture of Jake Fitzgerald - Damp Surveyor

Jake Fitzgerald - Damp Surveyor

Surveyor of Timber & Dampness in Buildings (CSTDB) & ( MRICS ) Chartered Quantity Surveyor

Jake is a qualified chartered quantity surveyor and experienced damp specialist with a unique skill set in thermal imaging. With a focus on effective solutions, Jake combines his expertise in quantity surveying and thermal imaging to accurately assess and address damp-related issues. He utilises advanced technology to identify hidden moisture sources and develop targeted strategies, ensuring comprehensive and cost-effective solutions for his clients. With a commitment to open communication and client satisfaction, Jake delivers cutting-edge solutions that tackle damp challenges head-on.

Connect with him on Linkedin...

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