Housing Disrepair Claims

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How Much Compensation Can You Get For A Housing Disrepair?

By Danielle Jordan. Last Updated 2nd March 2023. Welcome to our guide to housing disrepair claims. Your house is your home, and whether you rent or own, you should feel like it is a comfortable place to relax in. In this guide, we will talk about how to claim for housing disrepair.

If your home is in a state of disrepair and the responsibility for the repairs lies with your landlord but they are not maintaining and repairing things as they should be then it can have a very negative impact on the quality of your day to day life and even your health.

If you have reported the issues to your landlord but they have failed to take the appropriate action to make the necessary repairs then you may be able to start housing disrepair claims against your landlord. If you believe that you have a good case for a housing disrepair damages claim then we might be able to help you. Our useful guide contains lots of helpful information that could help you if you decide to seek compensation for your situation.

Housing disrepair claims

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What Are My Landlord’s Responsibilities?

If you are a tenant living in poor condition in council housing your landlord has a responsibility to keep the property in good condition and also to undertake repair work on anything major that is damaged otherwise you will be within your rights to launch housing disrepair claims. Your landlord should repair and maintain the following:

  • Damage to the exterior of the property such as external walls, the roof and the windows, also any structural issues
  • Pipes and drains and any sanitary fixtures in the property; sinks, baths, toilets
  • Heating and the supply of hot water
  • Any gas appliances
  • The chimney, if there is one, pipes, flues and the ventilation
  • All electrical wiring
  • In the case of an apartment and flat disrepair, the landlord is also responsible for repairing damage in common areas such as hallways and staircases

In some cases, this might mean your landlord hiring external contractors to complete the work, however, in the case of smaller jobs they may prefer to tackle it themselves. Either way, they are also responsible for any damage caused whilst the repairs are undertaken.

These repairs should be undertaken at your landlord’s expense, and they must not pass on responsibility to you for any of these repairs that they are responsible for.

If you are a private tenant your landlord also has the same responsibilities with regard to the repair work they should undertake on your rental property as a council tenant has. If your property has damp your landlord may not be responsible for any repair work, but it will depend on the type of damp and the cause.

If you think that you might have a claim for housing disrepair damages against your landlord and would like to discuss it then contact our experienced team of solicitors who will be happy to discuss the details of your circumstances with you to see if you could put forward housing disrepair claims.

What Are The Tenant’s Maintenance Responsibilities?

As a tenant, you also have some responsibilities for keeping your home in a good state of repair. You have a responsibility to:

  • Look after your home appropriately this means doing minor repairs such as changing any light bulbs and fuses
  • Keep the property clean
  • Makes sure that neither you nor your visitors cause damage to the property
  • Use the fixtures and fitting in the correct manner, a good example of this is not flushing inappropriate items down the toilet and causing a blockage

You are also responsible for informing your landlord of any repair work that is required on the property, your landlord is not responsible for the repair work until they have been informed that there is an issue, and providing appropriate access to the property so that your landlord can either complete the repair work or authorise an appropriate contractor to make the repair.

Reporting necessary repairs may be a condition on your tenancy agreement and that often applies to any problem, no matter how small or insignificant it might appear to you.

Whether you are a private or a council tenant your maintenance responsibilities should be the same, it is a good idea to check your contract to make sure of this before you attempt to launch housing repair claims.

What Should I Do If My Landlord Is Not Carrying Out Repairs?

It is a good idea to advise your landlord of any repair work that needs on the property in writing where possible. You should do this as soon as you notice any issues. Once you have advised the landlord they should make sure that any repairs are taken care of in a reasonable amount of time. What constitutes a reasonable amount of time will depend on the repair in question and this comes up in many housing disrepair claims; a faulty boiler will require more urgent repair than a dripping tap.

Should your landlord fail to undertake the necessary repair work on something that could cause calm to others or is having a determinantal effect on your health then you can speak to your local authority (council) who have the power to intervene and make sure that your landlord deals with anything that is dangerous with the property. If you believe that the property is not in a liveable condition then they can also help you with this. Your landlord can not insist you make repairs to the property that they are responsible for, but if it is allowed within your tenancy agreement you might be able to repair minor parts of the property. If you have to pay for someone to come in and carry out the repair or if the repair costs you money then you may be able to claim this back from your landlord.

If you have reported the issues to your landlord and they have failed to make the necessary repairs then it might be a good idea to seek legal advice. Contact our professional team of legal experts; we have years of experience of dealing with housing disrepair claims and will be able to advise you of the next steps you should be considering in order to get your landlord to fulfil their responsibilities towards you their tenant. We can discuss your case with you and answer any questions that you might have as part of a free no-obligation consultation.

Can I Claim Compensation For Damp And Mould?

Before we explore how much compensation for damp and mould-induced injuries could be awarded for a successful claim, let’s look at what could be included in your claim. Your claim for disrepair may include both general damages and special damages.

If your claim is successful, general damages will compensate for your pain and suffering. This is looked at in more detail later on in this guide. Firstly, we are going to examine special damages.

Under special damages, you could recover costs incurred because of your injuries. Not all claims will include special damages. In addition, it is likely that you will need to submit evidence, such as receipts.

Examples of special damages in a housing disrepair claim could include:

  • Medical costs. For example, you may require prescriptions for illnesses brought on by the damp and mould. You could claim back the money you spend on these as well as any medical aids required to cope with your illnesses.
  • Repairs and replacements of personal property. If the mould and damp caused damage to your property, you might be able to claim back the costs of having it repaired and/or replaced.
  • Loss of earnings. For example, you may have been unable to work due to illnesses caused by the damp and mould. In addition to recovering your lost wage, you might also be able to recover lost pension contributions and bonuses.

Call our advisors to discuss what else could be included in your compensation from a landlord for mould should your claim prove successful.

Can I Claim If The House Is Damp Causing Me Allergies Or Asthma?

If you have developed an allergy or Asthma, or already have allergies or asthma that has got worse following damp issues in your home then you may be able to claim compensation. This also applies to anyone else who resides in the property if they have developed a medical condition that might be the result of the disrepair of the property. The type and cause of the damp will need to be confirmed but if the reason for the damp is due to repair that’s your landlord is responsible but has failed to rectify then you may have a good case against them.

If the damp is caused by disrepair to the property then you can speak to the environmental health department at the council and request that they inspect the property. If they decide that the level of disrepair is serious enough they will serve a legal notice to carry out repair work to your landlord. This a legal document and if your landlord does not comply it could lead to criminal prosecution.

In order to back your housing disrepair claims make sure that you keep copies of any paperwork that you send to the council, including photographs of mould patches and damage to the property. You should also keep any receipts for items you have had to replace, and the damaged items themselves where practical. If the disrepair has caused issues with your health you should visit your GP so that they will have a note of the issues.

As the tenant, you have every right to ask your landlord to make the appropriate and necessary repairs in a timely manner. If you would like to discuss whether you have grounds for housing disrepair claims our experienced team are on hand to help you, all you need to do is call us.

How Much Compensation Could I Claim For Injuries Caused By Housing Disrepair?

Following a successful claim for housing disrepair, the compensation you are awarded could include general and special damages. General damages compensate you for the pain and suffering your injury has caused you, as well as how it has impacted your quality of life.

To help you gain a clearer understanding of how much you could receive in compensation for housing disrepair, we have created the following table. The figures we have listed have been taken from the most recent edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG), updated April 2022. This is a document used by many legal professionals when they are valuing claims, as the JCG lists compensation brackets for various injuries.

However, you should only use this table as a guide, as how much compensation you could receive will be affected by the specific factors of your claim.

Edit
Injury Notes Amount
Lung disease (c) A disease such as emphysema that worsens the lungs function and causes breathing difficulties with frequent coughing. £54,830 to £70,030
Lung disease (d) Breathing difficulties that require the frequent use of an inhaler and will have a impact on working/social life. £31,310 to £54,830
Lung disease (e) Bronchitis that causes wheezing. However there will be little impact on daily life. £20,800 to £31,310
Asthma (a) Permanent disabling asthma that causes prolonged coughing and disturbs sleep. £43,060 to £65,740
Asthma (b) Chronic asthma that causes breathing difficulties and the person will occasionally need to use an inhaler. £26,290 to £43,010
Asthma (e) Mild asthma, colds, bronchitis and other chest problems. Up to £5,150
Dermatitis and Other Skin Conditions (a) Both hands suffer with dermatitis which results in the skin cracking and will be sore. £13,740 to £19,200
Dermatitis and Other Skin Conditions (b) One or both hands suffer with dermatitis which lasts for a significant amount of time. £8,640 to £11,410
Cold Injuries (a) Could include cases of long-term cold sensation in the feet and hands which will cause pain and discomfort. Around £15,000

Special damages compensate you for financial losses you have suffered due to your injury, such as medical expenses or loss of earnings. You will need to provide evidence of these financial losses. Evidence could include payslips, invoices and receipts.

Contact our advisors today if you have any questions about making a claim for disrepair to your home.

Will My Landlord Take Action Against Me If I Make A Claim?

We understand that you might be concerned about housing disrepair claims against your landlord because of housing disrepair. It can be a daunting process and many clients are worried that their landlord might take action against them such as raising the rent or even serving an eviction notice. As a tenant, you have certain rights, when you sign a tenancy agreement just as you agree to keep the property in good order and pay your rent on time your landlord agrees to keep the property in good order and take care of necessary repairs in a timely manner.

It is illegal for a landlord to attempt to evict a tenant without first going through the correct legal procedures, they cannot make you move out of your home just for asking for necessary repairs to be done. If you are in an assured shorthold tenancy then it can be easier for your landlord to evict you but if you have a tenancy agreement that began after 1st October 2015 then you should be able to challenge a “retaliatory eviction”.

You should not withhold rent payments at any point during your housing disrepair claims, as this could give your landlord legal grounds to begin eviction proceedings for non-payment of rent.

There are also certain rules that your landlord is required to follow if they wish to increase your rent and when they can do so. Should your landlord make attempts to intimidate you as a result of your claim for compensation for housing disrepair you should let us know so that we can help you take the appropriate steps.

Housing Disrepair Claims Compensation – How Can A No Win No Fee Solicitor Help Me?

If your home is in a poor state of repair, or you’ve suffered injuries due to disrepair, you may be eligible for housing disrepair compensation. A No Win No Fee solicitor could support your claim under a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). A CFA is a type of No Win No Fee agreement.

This means that your solicitor generally won’t ask you for an upfront payment for their services. Typically, you won’t be expected to meet the costs for any ongoing fees either. If your solicitor wins your claim, they take a success fee out of your award; the fee is legally limited. If your solicitor does not succeed, they generally won’t charge for their services.

If you would like to know how much compensation for housing disrepair you could potentially claim, contact our advisors. They can answer any questions you may have about the process of making housing disrepair claims for compensation. Should you have an eligible case, they could put you in touch with one of our solicitors, who typically offer their services under a No Win No Fee arrangement.

To get in touch:

More Information On Housing Disrepair Compensation Claims

Housing Disrepair Claims FAQs

Can I claim compensation from my landlord?

You can do so if the accident is due to negligence courtesy of your landlord.

Can you sue the council for damp?

Should the damp be due to poor maintenance and it happens within a council home, you can sue them for compensation.

What is the housing disrepair protocol?

This is a set of guidelines to be followed by any leaseholders who wish to make a claim for compensation following housing disrepair.

What are unfit living conditions?

This covers any situations where the house is overloaded with dirt and filth or where the construction of the property is substandard.

What is a landlord’s duty of care?

This is where a landlord must ensure the health and safety of tenants in their properties at all times.

Thank you for reading our guide to housing disrepair claims.

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    • Patrick Mallon

      Patrick is a Grade A solicitor having qualified in 2005. He's an an expert in accident at work and public liability claims and is currently our head of the EL/PL department. Get in touch today for free to see how we can help you.

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