Results: Damp homes

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As well as being cold, most homes were very damp.  In fact, most householders reported some signs of dampness in their preliminary questionnaires:

  • 31.5% used dehumidifiers.
  • 47.1% had mould or damp related stains on more than an occasional basis.
  • 13.7% reported that their home’s interior walls or ceilings had black stains or mould on them ‘always’ or ‘often.‘
  • 57.6% reported musty smells after a week of being closed up.
  • 24.5% had leaks or dampness under their floors.

This was supported by the In-Home Assessments which found:

  • 63.2% had mould or mildew inside.
  • 55.4% had condensation on bedroom windows in winter.

The humidity sensors revealed that even homes where the homeowners didn’t note mould or musty smells still had dampness problems.  Generally both sensors were triggered, indicating that dampness problems were throughout the house, rather than just in the bathroom.

As expected given the climate, Auckland homes were more likely to be damp than other parts of the country, although the majority of monitored homes in all locations but Christchurch were damp.   Christchurch homes were among the driest, but still many had dampness problems. 

However, it is possible to have a dry home - even in Auckland.  A minority of monitored homes - 27% in Auckland, and 61% in Christchurch - didn’t have significant dampness problems.


Related Documents

  • 31-May-2010 (Report HR2420/13)

    HomeSmart Renovations: Householder Actions and Responses to Dwelling Performance (PDF 1.1MB)

    Kay Saville Smith, Ruth Fraser, Nikki Buckett, Michael Camilleri

    This report presents self-reported and monitored data from householders participating in the HomeSmart Renovation Project. It describes the profile of those householders, their perceptions of house condition, and their past, intended and actual renovations. It considers the profile of house performance of the subset of householders whose dwellings were monitored for temperature and the impact of renovations on electricity and water consumption.


Mould on ceiling