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  • FIRST POST
    • feesh
    • By feesh 9th Nov 07, 2:00 PM
    • 329Posts
    • 225Thanks
    feesh
    How do you find a reputable damp company?
    • #1
    • 9th Nov 07, 2:00 PM
    How do you find a reputable damp company? 9th Nov 07 at 2:00 PM
    I know damp-proofing courses are not always the best option, but we don't have any choice but to get one done - there is damp in the back of our c.1900 terraced house which is apparently caused by the concrete path out the back which supports a garden wall which butts up to the house and is shared with our neighbours, so it would be a logistical nightmare to get it lowered (also part of it is a communal right of way running behind all the houses).

    The damp was picked up in our original survey and it is a condition of our mortage that we get it rectified.

    We have had one company out who seemed to me to be trustworthy (Garratts of Kings Langley). They said that damp proof courses are often NOT the solution, but the state our existing one was in, coupled with the concrete out the back which just can't be taken out, means we have no choice but to get one. They quoted something between £1k and £2k (can't remember exactly). This was to include the fitting of a vent in the floor, as they said this would do more to help the damp than anything else.

    I feel like we should see some other companies, get some other quotes just to compare, but the market seems to be so full of cowboys that we keep putting it off!

    How do you find a reputable damp company? We're in Hertfordshire but close to Bedfordshire and Bucks too.

    I would REALLY appreciate some advice on this as we need to get something sorted soon. (Last night we had an electrical fault caused by a socket on the damp wall shorting. The damp is causing the plaster to crumble away too and there is now an obvious tide mark in the room in question).

    Many thanks
    A confused and worried Feesh x
    Last edited by feesh; 09-11-2007 at 2:40 PM.
Page 1
    • Debt_Free_Chick
    • By Debt_Free_Chick 10th Nov 07, 5:00 AM
    • 13,149 Posts
    • 9,492 Thanks
    Debt_Free_Chick
    • #2
    • 10th Nov 07, 5:00 AM
    • #2
    • 10th Nov 07, 5:00 AM
    Don't call out "damp companies". They only offer one solution and all they want to do is convince you to buy it.

    Find a Chartered Building Surveyor that specialises in building defects, building maintenance & repairs, or refurbishments.

    Use the advanced search on the RICS website.

    Pick two or three and ask to speak to a surveyor to outline your problem. They will usually chat on the phone and you can often "suss them out" from a 10 minute discussion about the problem.

    Pick the one you sound most comfortable with and ask them to look at the problem. Take it from there.

    Your property has survived for a considerable period of time without a modern DPC. There is a reason for the damp and it could be that a modern DPC won't solve it - or would create other problems. There are other ways of dealing with damp in a period property.
  • moob
    • #3
    • 10th Nov 07, 10:59 AM
    • #3
    • 10th Nov 07, 10:59 AM
    If you manage to get a list of contractors you think are suitable for the job, a quick call to your local trading standards department asking if they have been any complaints about them is a good start.
  • Reuters
    • #4
    • 11th Nov 07, 2:36 PM
    • #4
    • 11th Nov 07, 2:36 PM
    Having just had damp-proofing done, I can confirm that I still have no idea how you find a reputable company. I used Kenwoods as they were a known name (and the most expensive) but they were awful, so I suggest you don't use them. I have a patch of damp proofing that this stubbornly refusing to dry. I've had Kenwoods back and they told that that there was nothing wrong with it and that it could take 9 months (one month per inch depth of brick wall) to dry out completely.

    So as a word of warning, if your walls are that damp, getting them damp-proofed will not immediately solve your problem and you may find that you have to undertake the lowering of the path anyhow, and with less available funds to do it.

    Good luck
    Rx
  • ownerofthemoneypit
    • #5
    • 4th Dec 07, 6:32 PM
    • #5
    • 4th Dec 07, 6:32 PM
    I agree with reuters, I had similar experience they had defined penetrating damp as rising damp (my own fault for not doing enough research and making myself easy prey), had to get in a surveyor as an expert witness, and identify where the external penetrating damp was coming from.

    I would get in as many quotes as possible, bearing in mind that the "damp surveyors" are only salesman, and go with the most sensible, must be worth asking the surveyor whom identified the damp.

    I can't say if Mansells are any good as I have not used them, but whenever I told people about my experiences they were mentioned as pretty good, they are based in Watford.

    Really hope it gets fixed and this helps... A word of warning, if you're having it done from the inside, taking the plaster down is a mess.
  • ormus
    • #6
    • 4th Dec 07, 11:35 PM
    • #6
    • 4th Dec 07, 11:35 PM
    as you live near watford, contact the building research establishment.
    they have a lot to say about damp.
    and they have a very low opinion of specialist damp companies.
    Get some gorm.
    • madmalteaser
    • By madmalteaser 5th Dec 07, 3:24 PM
    • 296 Posts
    • 270 Thanks
    madmalteaser
    • #7
    • 5th Dec 07, 3:24 PM
    • #7
    • 5th Dec 07, 3:24 PM
    I've just made a post about finding trustworthy tradespeople - the website I've been using is: http://www.ratedpeople.com. Give it a read, it might be quite helpful.

    PROUD TO HAVE DEALT WITH MY DEBTS
    • roses
    • By roses 5th Dec 07, 8:10 PM
    • 2,290 Posts
    • 1,170 Thanks
    roses
    • #8
    • 5th Dec 07, 8:10 PM
    • #8
    • 5th Dec 07, 8:10 PM
    My brother in law used these people who he said were excellent:

    http://www.kenwoodplc.co.uk/

    He called them back 3 years later to rectify some further damp and they came back free of charge.

    They have several offices in Watford, St Albans, London & other surrounding areas
  • chriseeboy
    • #9
    • 30th Dec 07, 11:26 PM
    Reputable Contractors for Damp Proofing.
    • #9
    • 30th Dec 07, 11:26 PM
    Hi,

    I am an Area Manager for a manufacturer of remedial treatment products for property repairs that include damp and timber treatment.

    Can I suggest you visit the Property Care Association website. This will direct you to reputable companies that operate within your area.

    You can invite quotes from as many companies as you like and they will vary by quite a few hundred pounds and with as many suggestions for suitable remedies.

    It is always best to use an accredited member of such a body for quality of work and to receive insurance backed guarantees.

    Memebers of the PCA will carry their logo and another logo which is the BWPDA, essentially the same body.

    Hope this is useful.
  • simonasays
    Hope this helps I would reccommend this damp proofing company
    I agree it can be a little tricky finding a reputable damp proofing contractor, if your based in London then Kenwood PLC are a big company with proper standards and regulation, they are public companyy as well so more regulated than independant operators. My brother in law used them after a cowboy company botched the first attempt and they were really good, hope this helps somewhat
    • docmatt
    • By docmatt 30th May 11, 10:57 AM
    • 895 Posts
    • 469 Thanks
    docmatt
    I agree it can be a little tricky finding a reputable damp proofing contractor, if your based in London then Kenwood PLC are a big company with proper standards and regulation, they are public companyy as well so more regulated than independant operators. My brother in law used them after a cowboy company botched the first attempt and they were really good, hope this helps somewhat
    Originally posted by Kenwood PLC
    Thanks for the spam but this was posted in 2007 so the OP has either had the work done, moved house or his lounge is now a swimming pool.
  • elainetcarr
    I'd like to post a warning to anyone thinking of using Kenwood Damp plc. They came round to treat the damp in our lower ground floor, but made a mess of our downstairs. They removed and destroyed our skirting boards and window sills (by 'mistake') broke some electrical sockets and phone lines and left other items finished in a most peculiar manner, eg one electrical socket was encased flush with the plaster so we can't access it without breaking off the plaster, and another with wires hanging out of the wall. When we approached them to ask them to compensate us for the skirting boards/window sills they were defensive and rude (multiple members of staff) and after a month of pressuring them, agreed to give us a menial sum which was a fraction of what was required to fix our downstairs. Avoid these guys at all costs - unprofessional, unskilled, and aggressive when things go wrong.
  • carrieisgreat
    completely agree with the post above.... reading it I almost thought it was me writing it.... If anyone would like to see the mess they made of my place please post back and i'll give you a view of the electrical sockets on the ground/ wonky walls and give you a full account of how them being aggressive including turning up at my place of work.
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