The festive season is upon us and the past week the weather has felt particularly cold.
With this in mind, it is important to think about how this might impact your rental property.
We spoke with one of our members about some issues they were facing that could well be as a result of the winter time, and what they can do to combat it.
The landlord has a property where for the majority of the year, it is condensation free, but as the colder months come in, condensation presents itself. They want to avoid it arising at all in future and to combat it now so that it does not develop into damp.
Condensation forms more commonly in winter as the amount of moisture that the air can hold when the temperature is lower, is also lower. So as the amount of water vapour builds up, it will begin to form on the colder surfaces like walls, mirrors, windows and window frames. Rooms where the moisture levels are already high, like bathrooms or kitchens, are much more likely to show condensation. Persistent condensation could lead to damp in the property and potentially structural damage if left alone.
The RLA has practical guidance for both landlords and tenants on how they can combat condensation. It’s not going to be sensible to ask tenants to open all their windows and ventilate the property when it is very cold outside, so the most appropriate action here is to keep the property heated, as the higher temperature will allow more moisture to be held in the air.
Our member might also want to consider what energy efficiency improvements are available to them, some may still have funding available for tenants to apply for. Making it easier and cheaper for tenants to heat the home makes them more likely to do so, and should reduce condensation that way – and save them some money. It could be worth also considering some form of ventilation or extraction to remove moisture from the property in the most effected rooms like bathrooms or kitchens.
Maria Sheldon, Advice Team Leader, said “Condensation is one of the most common problems landlords may face and this becomes more common in winter time. It is a good idea for landlords and tenants to work together to help reduce condensation as it is beneficial for both parties.”