There are 29 million homes in the UK and damp, condensation and mould problems are prevalent is around 6 million homes.
The impact of these problems on health can be significant, especially for
vulnerable groups such as children, the elderly, and people with
respiratory conditions. A report by the Royal College of Physicians and
Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health estimated that over 1
million homes in the UK have severe hazards that can lead to respiratory
illness, including dampness and mould. The report also highlighted the
impact of poor housing conditions on mental health, including stress,
anxiety, and depression.
In 2023, Housing Secretary Michael Gove announced that the UK
government has proposed amendments to the Social Housing
(Regulation) Bill to introduce “Awaab’s Law.” This law will mandate
landlords to fix reported health hazards within specified time frames. The
government’s decision was made in response to the tragic death of two-
year-old Awaab Ishak, who died as a result of prolonged exposure to
damp and mould in the family home owned by Rochdale Boroughwide
The new damp and mould rules will form part of the tenancy agreement,
so tenants will be able to hold landlords to account by law if
they fail to provide a safe and healthy environment. The changes come as
the government makes amendments to the Social Housing (Regulation)
Bill that aims to drive up standards in the sector and hold landlords to
account for the service they provide to their tenants.
To tackle these issues, the UK government has introduced several laws and regulations to improve the quality of housing and prevent the occurrence of damp, condensation, and mould. The Housing Act 2004 introduced the Housing Health and Safety Rating System, which sets out standards for the safety and health of occupants in residential properties, including addressing dampness, mould, and excess cold. In addition, the Energy Efficiency (Private Rented Property) (England and Wales) Regulations 2015 require landlords to improve the energy efficiency of their properties, which can help reduce the occurrence of damp and mould by improving ventilation and insulation. Local authorities also have powers to address these issues, including the power to issue improvement notices or carry out remedial works in cases where landlords fail to address damp and mould problems.
Contact our Social Housing Team
Call us on0333 880 3427