Article 8 - Confused! - This was a genuine enquiry!
This was an email I received from a prospective client which highlights what you could be faced with when trying to obtain estimates for what you believe should be the same work.
This was a genuine enquiry!
A lady did everything she thought was right and found her self totally confused. She emailed the following to me.
“We have had three surveyors from various treatment companies looking at the damp problem in our house. Can anyone help with the following as they have all come up with different diagnosis and solutions?
Rising damp all around the inside of the external and internal walls (but not bay window area) in the living room. Rising damp in internal breeze block walls in dining room, toilet, larder and kitchen. Solution: hack off plaster on all affected walls to 1 ft, install new damp proof course and re-plaster. Replace affected skirting board. Cost £3,000
No rising damp in living room - problem caused by condensation. No rising damp in dining room, toilet, larder and kitchen. Wet rot in skirting boards on internal walls in dining room, toilet, larder and kitchen, as plaster goes all the way down to the floor.
Solution: remove skirting boards and chip out plaster to stop the bridging of the damp course, and then replace skirting boards. Cost £650
Rising damp in living room, but only in the front bay window and walls along it. This is due to the bay window outside wall being rendered over the damp-roof course. No damp in dining room, toilet, larder and kitchen walls. Wet rot in skirting boards most probably due to a leak of some sort in the downstairs toilet.
Solution: hack off 1 metre of plaster in affected dining room area and re-plaster. Replace all affected skirting boards. Cost £1,100
The three surveyors contradict each other on various points: -
Surveyor 1 and 3 agree that there is rising damp in the living room, but disagree on the scale of the problem, and also on the remedy. One says plaster to be removed to 1 ft whereas the other says 1 metre. Surveyor 2 does not agree that there is any rising damp in the living room.
Surveyor 1 says that there is rising damp in the dining room, toilet, larder and kitchen; whereas surveyors 2 and 3 say that there is no rising damp in any of the rooms.
Surveyor 1 says that the wet rot in the skirting boards on the internal walls is due to rising damp, whereas surveyor 2 says it is due to the plaster being all the way down to the floor, and surveyor 3 says that it doesn’t matter about the plaster going all the way to the floor and it is probably due to a leak somewhere in the downstairs toilet.
Do you have any advice on what the surveyors say and what we should do next?
Thanks in advance!”
My advice was to engage the services of an experienced independent surveyor but unfortunately I never heard the outcome.
For information about Peter’s independent survey service click here.