Coun­cil is re­ceiv­ing a damp­ness com­plaint each week

Poor con­di­tions mean 1200 on wait­ing list for new home

Lennox Herald - - NEWS - Lor­raine Weir

A coun­cil ten­ant com­plains about damp in their home ev­ery week, it has been re­vealed.

West Dun­bar­ton­shire Coun­cil has con­firmed that the lo­cal author­ity has had 64 com­plaints in the last year re­lat­ing to damp­ness — more than five ev­ery month.

And the lo­cal author­ity has ad­mit­ted that almost 1200 ten­ants are cur­rently on the wait­ing list look­ing to move home.

The fig­ures were re­vealed to the Len­nox Her­ald fol­low­ing our story last week about 21-year-old Demi-Paige Black and her part­ner Ross McFall hav­ing to spend the last seven months sleep­ing on their sofa due to damp tak­ing over their bed­room.

The prob­lem emerged over a year ago and the coun­cil is only now fix­ing the is­sue af­ter the Len­nox Her­ald got in­volved.

Sev­eral ten­ants ex­pressed their con­cern over the state of coun­cil houses across the area on our Face­book page last week and, in re­sponse, we quizzed the lo­cal author­ity on the ex­tent of the prob­lem.

The spokesman con­tin­ued: “Our com­plaints reg­is­ter shows that we re­ceived 64 com­plaints re­lat­ing to damp­ness in the last 12 months.

“Not all of th­ese would have re­sulted in treat­ment as some damp­ness re­ports re­late to con­den­sa­tion, which can be re­solved through prop­erly ven­ti­lat­ing and heat­ing a prop­erty. It should be noted that, in the last year, we have car­ried out more than 36,000 re­ac­tive re­pairs with cus­tomer sat­is­fac­tion sit­ting at above 93 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to lat­est fig­ures.”

Demi told us how she had sev­eral con­ver­sa­tions with the coun­cil be­fore ac­tion was taken and, up un­til our story be­ing pub­lished last week, still felt that the prob­lem be­hind the damp­ness wasn’t be­ing ad­dressed.

An­swer­ing our ques­tion about how damp­ness com­plaints are dealt with, the spokesman told us: “When damp­ness is iden­ti­fied within a prop­erty, de­pend­ing on the cause, we would in­struct a re­pair to be car­ried out.

“This would be ac­tioned within four weeks. If the damp­ness is ex­ten­sive, we would in­struct a spe­cial­ist con­trac­tor to fully sur­vey the prop­erty to de­ter­mine the cause and ap­pro­pri­ate so­lu­tion.

“A ten­ant could be de­canted from a prop­erty if the work re­quired was ex­ten­sive and in­volved a num­ber of rooms.”

Demi told us how she had ap­plied to be moved from the prop­erty to an­other coun­cil house but didn’t have points which would qual­ify her for a move as she doesn’t have a re­lated med­i­cal con­di­tion.

When we asked the coun­cil how many ten­ants are cur­rently on the wait­ing list, the spokesman said: “1189 cur­rent ten­ants have sub­mit­ted ap­pli­ca­tions to move home.”

A re­port due to go be­fore the coun­cil’s hous­ing and com­mu­ni­ties com­mit­tee next week shows that only 87.8 per­cent of re­ac­tive re­pairs car­ried out in the last year were com­pleted right first time. This had slipped from 94.5 per­cent in the pre­vi­ous year.

It also con­firms that West Dun­bar­ton­shire is ranked as one of the worst in Scot­land for meet­ing the Scot­tish Hous­ing Qual­ity Stan­dard by 2015 as only 88.2 per­cent of homes in the area meet the bench­mark set by the Scot­tish Govern­ment.

Fed up DemiPaige Black and Ross McFall were forced to camp out in their liv­ing room

Mould mis­ery Coun­cil house damp­ness

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