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Question: I have a terraced house in Newcastle upon Tyne, which was built 1901, my problem is that the house sweats; this causes mould and rotting floors and walls. How do I stop this?

Answer: Houses built in the Edwardian period over 100 years ago were all solidly constructed with coal fires for heating, open flue chimneys, sash windows and lots of draughts and natural ventilation. Modern building techniques including, blocking up the chimney, installing central heating, double glazing and draught proofing, as well as adding showers and modern kitchens. Outside we’ve added modern patios which often block up the original ground floor air vents.

The result is that the property will be effectively to well-sealed, a bit like a tupperware box, more often than not condensation becomes a problem and this can affect the sub-floor area, wet rot in joists and floorboards is common. Worse still, dry rot could result.

You need to address the issue of ventilation and increasing air circulation in your property. Black mould is a tell-tale sign and a warning to take action before things get worse and start to cost you a lot of money to correct.