What Are Housing Structure Issues, And How Can We Help?

HousingDisrepairStructuralDamage
LPC & GDL Matthew Shiels
Written by: Alice Williams Legally reviewed by: LPC & GDL Matthew Shiels Updated: In: Housing Disrepair

When you are permanently living in a property, minor damage and wear and tear is unfortunately common. However, if you are living in an unsafe dwelling that is not being dealt with by your landlord, then housing disrepair solicitors will be able to help you get the support and possibly compensation that you need.

What is House Subsidence?

Subsidence is the name for when the ground beneath a property may sink, causing the property’s foundations to also sink down with it. This process can cause the walls and floors to shift, leading to cracks and potentially destabilising the construction of the property.

What are the Common Signs of  Subsidence?

Some of the most common signs of subsidence include:

  • Vertical and diagonal cracking.
  • External cracking which corresponds with the same area of wall internally
  • Seasonal opening and closing of cracks.
  • Large cracks running through the damp proof course (DPC) into the property foundations.
  • Cracks appearing after long durations of dry weather.

What is Your Landlord Responsible For?

  • Holes in the plaster/wall/floor
    Properties that are not regularly inspected and maintained can often result in defects to the structure that appear as gaps and holes within plasterwork, timber, flooring and around radiator pipes. These can frequently permit vermin to gain access into the property and create an infestation that can cause issues to health if they are not addressed adequately and in a timely manner.
  • Rotten/defective flooring
    This can happen due to structural defects to the sub-flooring, as a result of damp with consequential deterioration to the woodwork beneath, and other related issues.
  • Large structural cracks
    These may appear in a number of different places in a property and for a number of different reasons. How serious the damage is may be determined by the length, depth and width of the crack. These frequently require further investigation that your landlord will be responsible for arranging.
  • Damaged roof tiling that allows water to leak into your property
    Your landlord should generally be responsible for the maintenance and repair of the roof but, as time progresses, roofs can suffer from a loss of tiles and deterioration in water proofing that can result in water leaks and damp within the property. You should always make sure that your landlord is aware of any of these problems so that they have chance to sort them out.
  • Rotten/defective window frames and doors
    This is a common problem that affects many rental properties. This can be due to rainwater and other levels of moisture causing deterioration to the window frames, defective sealant around the frame that allows rainwater to penetrate into the property, along with draughts that can make a property particularly cold.

How Can a Solicitor Help You?

If your live in social housing and your home is in a state of disrepair, then our housing disrepair solicitors can help you claim for the necessary repairs to be carried out. We could also help you claim compensation for any physical or financial problems you have suffered as a result of the disrepair in your home. Please be aware that our housing disrepair solicitors can only help people who live in social housing across England and Wales. We cannot assist you if you are in a private rental.

Read more on our housing disrepair page.

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