Fear Of Mouldy Home Will Make Catching COVID-19 Fatal!

A Brentford family of five are terrified that their mouldy home may worsen their chances of becoming seriously ill with coronavirus.

Mould and damp has appeared in all the rooms of a five bedroom house. The mould has even spread to the children’s toys. The family were forced to move the children into one bedroom to escape the mould around the house. They fear the living conditions will cut their chances of surviving coronavirus due to mould effecting the respiratory system. The issue between Hounslow Council and the family has been going on from 2017-2020. Despite visits from several surveyors, and even a legal battle the issue has not been resolved.

The third lockdown is going to be a lot harder on families suffering poor quality housing. It is your legal right to live without leaks, damp or mould. Call us today for free advice on 0800 047 2017 or text ‘HELP. to 82222.


Housing Disrepair Causing Health Problems

Home is a place to escape daily hassles and is a space of comfort and safety. Unfortunately, an estimated fourteen million UK families are living in poorly conditioned homes which is often a source of mental and physical health problems.

  • GPs identified housing issues can cause health issues such as anxiety and depression.
  • 1 in 5 English adults (21%) said a housing issue had negatively impacted upon mental health in the last 5 years.
  • People living in damp homes are twice as likely to suffer from respiratory problems, allergies, or asthma.
  • Babies and children are more likely to suffer from Eczema.

Inhaling or touching mould spores may cause an allergic reaction, such as sneezing, a runny nose, red eyes, and skin rash.
Click here for further information from the NHS

If you are living with damp, mould and disrepair do not let it impact your mental and physical health. If you are in council or social housing association tenant living in a poorly maintained home, then we are here to help.

Call or text us today to find out more about our advice service and how we can assist you. Call 0800 047 2017 or text ‘HELP’ 82222.



Damp Homes Pose Health Risk To Millions In The UK

European governments’ expenditures on asthma and COPD in terms of hospitalisation, loss of productivity and medical treatment amounts to 82 billion Euros each year, according to the research.

In light of the findings, the VELUX Group is calling for healthier homes to be a central consideration for the new European framework for national building legislations, which will affect UK house builders once implemented.

The research from Fraunhofer IBP, reveals the socio-economic costs of asthma and COPD, which are proven effects also of living in damp and unhealthy buildings. The costs are 82 billion Euros annually, covering European governments’ direct expenses on medical treatment and additional care for patients in- and outside of hospitals, as well as indirect costs due to loss of productivity.

The study also reveals that close to 84 million Europeans live in damp or mouldy dwellings, which increases their risk of having respiratory diseases and life-long allergies by 40%. This proves the number of people living in unhealthy buildings remains an issue, despite recent awareness of the correlation between indoor environment and human health.


How to prevent dampness in homes

According to the Fraunhofer institute dampness is one of the main defects in buildings across Europe. Primarily caused by inadequate building structures and home owners’ lack of attention to ventilate sufficiently. As a consequence, mould is likely to grow. However the risk of this can be reduced significantly by choosing the right building fabrics during renovations.

In April 2016 the VELUX Group completed the RenovActive project in Belgium, a home renovation based on Active House principles focusing on the building’s architectural quality, human health, comfort and well-being, energy efficiency, and environmental benefits.

A key element in the modernization is the prevention of indoor dampness and mould, which is ensured by a natural and continuous airflow in the house. Read more about RenovActive by clicking here.


The judge decided that the landlord blatantly failed to carry out his obligation to repair her home. The judge found that she lived in “appalling conditions” for 10 ½ years, including:

  • No hot water for periods totalling almost 6 years
  • Inadequate and defective heating throughout the 10 ½ year tenancy
  • Rising and penetrating damp
  • Leaks from internal pipes
  • Rat infestation as a result of defects in the structure of the property
  • Defective plasterwork
  • Holes in the floorboards
  • Foul odours due to drainage problems.

His honour Judge Lopez, who heard the case at Birmingham County Court, found that the Claimant, Paula Williamson,  despite her poor start in life and her many problems, was persuasive, plausible and truthful.  He found that the landlord, Adalat Khan, gave a false account of events with the clear intention of  deceiving the Court, and in so doing subjected the character of Ms Williamson to a vicious and sustained attack.

Under cross examination by Zia Nabi, of Doughty Street Chambers, instructed by Mike McIlvaney of CLP, Adalat Khan was forced to accept that:

  • Rather than the 25 properties he had alleged he owned, the number was closer to 71 -81
  • He was expelled from the Midland Landlord Accreditation Scheme in April 2014 as a result his inaction over an improvement notice [served by the Local Authority]
  • He had twice been prosecuted, once for failing to provide adequate fire safety precautions for the tenants of one of his properties for which he was fined £1700
  • In December 2010 he was issued with a Notice by the Health and Safety Executive in respect of another of his properties over gas safety issues
  • One of his tenants had died only three months earlier as a result of fire related causes

The Judge observed that obtaining a straight and honest answer from Adalat Khan was as difficult as pulling teeth.

Ms Williamson was first referred to CLP by her support worker shortly before she was due to be evicted following s21 proceedings, seeking advice in relation to homelessness. As time was short, an expert report was urgently commissioned and Mike McIlvaney visited Ms Williamson in her home to take photographs of the conditions.  The judge said that these photographs illustrated the appalling conditions “far more graphically than the descriptions of the Claimant or Mr Wheeler” (the expert).

Following service of a letter before claim, Legal Aid was granted and proceedings were issued against Mr Khan for damages pursuant to s11 Landlord and Tenant Act 1985. As Ms Williamson had been evicted, the claim was for damages only. Had Ms Williamson consulted us just a few months later, her claim could not have proceeded as “damages only” disrepair claims were removed from the scope of Legal Aid in April 2013 by the government’s savage legal aid cuts. Today vulnerable tenants will go uncompensated, and landlords who show such callous disregard for their obligations to their tenants, such as Mr Khan, will get off scot free. As costs have been awarded against Mr Khan the case will ultimately cost the taxpayer nothing, but it could not have been brought without the underwriting provided by a Legal Aid Certificate.

Compensation was awarded for the full 10 ½ years of the tenancy. The Defence and Counterclaim did not plead limitation as at the date of the trial, and an application to amend to plead limitation made without notice on the morning of the trial was dismissed.

HHJ Lopez refused Mr Khan’s application for permission to appeal.

Congratulations to all those involved, to the lawyers  Mike McIlvaney and  Zia Nabi, and especially to Ms Williamson for her  bravery in the face of vicious calumny.