Damp Problems

Without a doubt a traditional town house would offer character, ample space and often a cheaper price tag. However, be aware that along with the lower price can come maintenance issues like damp or insect infestation which will make for a costly renovation. Be very careful to ensure that what looks good on the outside is not just camouflage and hiding a multitude of problems.

You must look for clues like if ceiling beams have been covered over or there are small holes in the wood. If the exposed wood is soft and pliable, what is in the walls will be far worse. Note that painting over the surface of the beams is not a valid solution and won’t stop the attack. Take a look at wood window frames and doors for further evidence of wood worm paying special attention to any wooden load bearing lintels.

In an older property often the roof will not have been repaired in years and older building methods generally were poor allowing water to get in is a common fault. Equally drainage and guttering on the outside of the property could very well be inviting water into the surrounding ground which will manifest as rising damp.

In short get the property checked out by a buildings surveyor BEFORE you make an offer so that you are fully aware what you are in for. Take the report to a qualified builder and get a quote for the work and then offer accordingly. You never know, it still could be the bargain you are looking for!