Exterior of a home with rising damp

How Much Does Damp Devalue a House?

How Much Does Damp Devalue a House?

 

Key Takeaways

Impact on House Value: The extent of devaluation due to dampness depends on its severity and the areas it affects. Minor damp patches may have minimal impact, but extensive damp issues can reduce a house's selling price by up to 53%.

Challenges in Selling a Damp House: Selling a home with undisclosed damp problems is difficult, as most buyers request survey reports. Damp issues can deter potential buyers and prolong the time a house spends on the market.

Repairing Damp Issues: Professional damp surveyors can assess the situation and recommend necessary repairs. The cost of damp treatment varies based on factors like the size of the affected area, severity, and damp type.

Importance of Addressing Damp Issues: Neglecting damp problems can have long-term effects on a home's value and marketability. Also, damp leads to various health risks. Prompt and professional addressing of damp issues is crucial for preserving a home's value.

 

 

A house that has damp issues ingrained in various areas indeed does get devalued if it were to be sold someday.

The bad news is that the home buyers out there have become more cautious, and why wouldn't they be? After all, it's about spending their hard-earned life savings. Before making a deal, they ask you for a complete survey, which will spill the beans.

And that's where the damp issues become a deal breaker, therefore devaluing the entire offering price of the house. But how much? Well, it depends on the amount of structural damage that damp has caused. Based on that, negotiations will happen, but certainly, the price you will get is not what you wished for.

So, what's the solution to this trouble? Is your house going to be hugely devalued due to dampness? And, can things get to a certain point where the property is not sellable at all? Well, let's talk about it.

 

 

First Off, What is this Damp? 

In a few plain words, it is often underrated but highly consequential. Damp is when there's a presence of moisture in the atmosphere of the home, on the walls, or even the flooring.

In an advanced case, where dampness has just run rampant around your home, it can even spread to the timber-made furniture and ceilings.

There's no single cause behind the occurrence of dampness, therefore making it hard for property owners to get to the root problem. But if we do, in fact, talk about the causes, they can be:

  • Poor ventilation inside the property
  • Presence of condensation
  • Leaking or faulty pipeline network
  • Damaged roof
  • Blocked gutters
  • Pores in bricks
  • Rising damp

 

 

Mould growth and dampness on an outer wall

 

 

Often, the signs of dampness are visible from the naked eye, which can allow you to act immediately and help prevent dampness. But in some rare causes behind dampness, such as pores in bricks, require expert assistance to find out.

 

 

So, How Much Does a House Get Devalued If There's Damp in it?

Well, well, well, it depends on the amount of dampness in the property and, more specifically, the areas in which it has it. If it's about just small wet, damp patches on a single wall, it won't depreciate the home's value that much.

But if there's a significant amount of dampness, which has affected the walls, the floor, and even the ceilings, then be ready to witness a decline of up to 53% of your home's selling price. Yes, that's how dangerous damp can be, not just for a property but also for your finances.

Amidst all this, the question is – can a house with a damp problem still be sold? For sure, it can be, but it would take some repairs if they are feasible, and if they are not, then you might still be able to sell it at an auction, which might not earn you much profit.

Therefore, it all boils down to the amount of dampness, how far it has spread, and other factors.

How to Spot Damp in a House: Signs that Indicate Dampness

It's easy to do that. But what's not easy is to find the real cause behind it. The winter season is when your home is most susceptible to dampness. That's because of the cooler temperature. The cooler it is, the more chance of condensation inside the house.

And, the more the condensation, the more wetness, which will ultimately lead to dampness. This type of dampness is termed condensation dampness.

 

 

Interior of a house full of dampness

 

 

Rising damp, on the other hand, which is also another type of damp, shows up mostly during summer. One of the major causes behind rising damp is the warm temperature that causes the soil and ground to expand with excess moisture and the water to vaporise, which travels up the walls of older buildings and causes damp marks on the walls.

Apart from rising dampness and condensation dampness, there are other types of damps, too. Regardless of the type, each damp has some signs to show, which can be:

  • Mildew or mould outbreak is often a precursor of damp
  • If there's dampness in the home, you might be able to smell unpleasant musty smell
  • The wallpapers or paintwork might start to peel
  • Stains and tidemarks might be visible on walls
  • The plaster begins to flake away, and bubbling happens on the walls
  • Wetness is the most common sign of dampness in a home
  • Floorboards and skirting boards might begin to rot
  • The Mortar gets damaged and starts to fall
  • Condensation might be visible on the windows

 

 

In What Ways Does a Damp Affect the Value of a House and the Process of Selling it?

There's no way property owners must neglect the damp problems in their property. Even a tiny patch or little wetness should be taken seriously because it won't take much time to spread throughout the house. And, if it does, the more it is left untreated, the more devaluing of the property happens.

So, it's essential to act before it gets too late. Damp comes with no alarm, and it can affect the property value of the property in multiple ways, which can be:

1.    Damp Reduces the Market Value of the House

That is certain. A home damaged due to dampness does not get much attention from the buyers, and the pricing of it also goes down. The more damage, the more depreciation the property will face. And, at one stage, the prospective buyers won't even bother to look at the property.

 

 

A house that has damp problems

 

 

2.    You Might Find Difficult to Sell a House Full of Damp

If the property is damaged and is falling apart, then who's going to buy it? You won't be able to sell it forcefully because most potential buyers will demand a survey report before making any deal. Therefore, dampness will be evident. Also, the home's value will decrease even more because of being listed for an extended time in the marketplace.

3.    With Damp in Your House, Expensive Repairs are Always on the Horizon

Untreated damp can take home damage to a level that can often be unimaginable. It can weaken the home's foundation, eat the brickwork, and even rot down the timbers, resulting in a high-cost estimate if you ever want to get things repaired.

4.    Damp Will Surely Affect Mortgage Lending

Mortgage lending becomes challenging if the property has damp issues. It's mainly because the mortgage lenders also demand survey reports of the home before giving out any money. If that report reflects dampness, either the mortgage money you will get might be low or may be rejected altogether.

 

 

Can Repairing Help? After Repairing, Can You Sell the House?

 

Exterior wall of a house eroded by damp

 

Yes, it will help. Repairing the house, removing the damp issues and eradicating the causes behind them will make your home look new. But it will also depend on the extent to which the dampness is present.

If it's too much and the cost estimate of the repairs crosses half of the home's value, then it won't be wise to get it repaired. To know that, you can get a damp survey done at a reasonable cost.

 

 

How Much Does Damp Treatment Costs?

Again, it depends on several factors, but we will still give you average numbers, i.e., anywhere between £2,000 to £6,000, but only for normal cases and the rare ones in which the damp has eaten away the whole property.

 

Damp patches and discolouration on house wall

 

As for the factors, here's what affects damp treatment cost:

  • The size of the area that is affected by the damp. If there are large areas like the whole flooring, a more significant number of walls, etc., ingrained by dampness, it will cost more to repair.
  • How severe the problem is will also affect the cost. If the whole damp-proof course is damaged or the rendering has gone, it will hurt more in your pockets as a new damp-proof course will be required.
  • The type, yes, the type of damp also matters. Rising damp treatment costs more, whereas penetrating damp costs less. Similarly, there are many other types of damps, which will cost differently money-wise.

 

Final Takeaway: Can You Sell a House That Has Damp?

Pretty much, yes. Despite all the damp problems, wetness, leaking pipes, wear and tear of walls, and whatever else there is, the property can be sold. However, there might be some expert assistance required for it.

Before going out on a property listing site and listing your house on it, call a damp surveyor so that a thorough investigation of the property can be done. It is necessary. And, given that almost every buyer asks for a survey report, surveying a house becomes even more critical.

The most significant benefit that you will reap from getting a damp survey is the things it involves. Typically, a damp survey involves clear outlining of the type of damp problems there are and how they can be treated.

So, getting a damp survey is totally worth it. Further, it will be your decision whether to get the repairs done or move forward without repairing and negotiate on a lower but fair sales price for the house.

But there's a catch. If the damp problems are little to moderate and haven't damaged the house that much, then the potential buyer might negotiate and buy it at a fair price.

However, if the damage is considerable and can be seen even with the naked eye, it might be difficult for you to sell the house. In that case, repairing is the only option left.

It is hard to make up your mind about repairing the house in which you don't want to live, but that's the only way to get a reasonable asking price. Also, most of the time, the repairs don't cost much, and recouping can be done when you finally list your house.

So, call in a damp professional who can handle both the surveying and the repairing part. This way, you will get the price that you wanted in the first place.

In rare cases, even the repairs are not feasible because the dampness is so severe, and the damage has gotten into the house's core. In these severe cases, your best bet would be selling the property at an auction.

 

Does Damp Devalue a House?

Yes, it does. But the devaluation will depend on how much dampness is in the house. So, if the damp issue is at an extreme level, the devaluation can be as much as 53% of the house's value. It's a considerable amount. Therefore, the best thing for houseowners is to keep an eye on damp problems and act immediately.

Can You Sell a House with Damp Problem?

It can be risky to do that. The first obstacle in doing that would be the survey report that highlights all the issues in a house, which almost every buyer is now demanding. I guess all of them became cautious and aware. So, you won't be able to sell a house that has damp without the buyer knowing about it. And, if you do somehow, it will cost the buyer a lot of money, and some of them might even file a forgery against you.

Does A Homebuyer Report Check for Damp?

It does. A homebuyer's report is a complete checklist of what's good and what's terrible in the house, which lets the buyer know if it is going to be a good deal for them or if they are going to have to move to the next one. The experts who create a homebuyer's damp report thoroughly investigate every area of the house, no matter how small or big it is.

Table of Contents

Picture of Sam Fitzgerald – CSRT Damp Surveyor

Sam Fitzgerald – CSRT Damp Surveyor

Author – CSRT Damp Surveyor
Sam is a highly qualified and seasoned damp surveyor with over ten years of specialised experience. With a strong academic foundation in building surveying and numerous professional certifications, Sam has established himself as an authority in the field of damp diagnosis and remediation.

At Damp Surveyors Ltd, Sam applies his extensive knowledge to help homeowners across the UK address and solve their damp issues effectively. His approach combines cutting-edge techniques with a commitment to honest, client-focused service, ensuring that every survey and recommendation is tailored to the specific needs of the property.

As a thought leader, Sam’s insights into damp prevention and treatment have been featured in industry publications, underscoring his role as a trusted expert dedicated to maintaining the integrity and comfort of your home.

Testing device for measuring dampness in a house

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Damp incurring on the skirting board of a house
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