Mum-of-five Laurie Mcfarlane has shared how her home has been plagued by damp and mold for the past six years. The 32-year-old claims poor drainage around her Silverdale home has led to water seeping through its lower floors.
There is also a leak in his upstairs bathroom and under his kitchen sink. As a result, Laurie says she is now on her fourth living room rug after they were destroyed by water damage.
She says she has been complaining to Aspire Housing about the state of her house since she moved in. But despite efforts to fix the problems, Laurie says nothing has worked.
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Now she says Aspire has offered to move her and her five children – aged 12, 7, 6, 4 and 1 – to temporary accommodation. But Laurie wants them to fix the problems or move her to a permanent place.
She said: “I moved here in May 2016. But it kept flooding all around the property and the water was rising through my floors.
“It’s getting worse and worse and there’s humidity all over my house, the mold is terrible and it smells musty. The carpets are constantly wet, you have to walk through the choking water.
“Over the years I have gone through three batches of rugs in my living room and on my stairs. The upstairs rugs also need to be replaced.
“I had to use my £140 carpet outside the living room to stem the water coming through the floor. I’m on Universal Credit and can’t keep paying for new carpets.
“A few weeks ago I slipped on the water coming up my kitchen floor and broke my knee. I still have a bump there now.
“I also have a leak coming from my upstairs bathroom and water is coming through my kitchen light. I was electrocuted about three weeks ago, it shot me in the arm and there was smoke.
“But I still don’t have anyone to check my electricity and I have five children who live with me. I also have a leak under my kitchen sink.
“All the wallpaper is peeling off in the rooms, the humidity is so high you have to re-brick it. I complained to Aspire and last year they came to investigate the condensation and found that there was 68 to 69% humidity.
“I had dehumidification systems and exhaust fans installed and a mold wash at my own expense and that still hasn’t rectified the problem. They came and did the investigation again 12 months later and the humidity was between 45 and 49%, which is still classified as medium to high.
“I’m expected to keep footing the bill for these things and I’ve had enough. No matter how much money I spend, you can’t rectify it.
“It got to the point where Aspire said they had to move me but they don’t have a four bedroom property available. They said they would move me to temporary accommodation but I’m struggling with my mental health and the last thing we need is multiple moves.
“I suffer from anxiety and depression, but Aspire has no awareness of the effect on my mental health. It’s an absolute disgrace.”
Laurie says her son was put on antibiotics this week for a chest and ear infection and her other children are constantly coughing. Now Laurie says she will consider taking legal action if nothing is done.
She added: “I need to be in a house that is actually livable. I don’t understand why I’m supposed to pay my rent in full for a property that’s not livable.
“No matter how high I have my heater, I can never heat the house because the walls are all damp and the floors are damp. I just want to be able to have a nice house, but I can’t.
“I told them that if they did nothing I would have no choice but to take me and my children to the hotel and I would charge them. My son was just put on antibiotics this week for a chest and ear infection and my other children are coughing and sniffling all the time.
“I know it’s not safe for us to be here and breathe in mold spores. Why should my children and I go through this?
“People who work for Aspire can go home to their dry homes. I’m going to consider legal action because I’m not getting anywhere with them.”
Alun Bragg, Communities Director at Aspire Housing: “We have maintained close contact with Ms McFarlane to resolve the repair issues identified and her request to consider a move to another home.
“We have carried out a detailed survey of the house and have since carried out a number of repairs, with further work to be undertaken. This will take place as soon as possible and may require Ms McFarlane to move into temporary accommodation to enable safe working.
“We have also received a request to move permanently to another home and are currently exploring this option with Ms. McFarlane and her family. We understand the frustration and stress she is experiencing and will continue to work closely with her to resolve any issues. problems. questions raised.”
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