Letter to landlords - advice on tenant safety, damp and mould


01 December 2022

Letter to landlords - advice on tenant safety, damp and mould

Dear colleague,  

I am sure you will have seen the recent media coverage of the coroner’s report on the tragic death of Awaab Ishak who died of a respiratory condition caused by mould in his home. This case has highlighted the clear link between mould and damp in houses and serious health conditions.  I would encourage you to read the full coroner’s report here.

Ensuring tenant and resident safety is a critical part of the work of social landlords in Scotland. The Scottish Housing Quality Standard was developed by the Scottish Government and requires that the homes provided by social landlords:

  • Meet the Tolerable Standards;
  • Be free from serious disrepair;
  • Be energy efficient;
  • Have modern facilities and services; and
  • Be healthy, safe and secure.

I am writing to ask all governing bodies and committees to consider the systems they have in place to ensure their tenants’ homes are not affected by mould and dampness and that they have appropriate, proactive systems to identify and deal with any reported cases of mould and damp timeously and effectively.

The current cost of living crisis, and in particular rising energy costs, will mean that many tenants face difficulties in heating their homes. So it is now more important than ever that all social landlords have robust procedures for managing reports and instances of mould and dampness.

We are working with the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations, Chartered Institute of Housing and ALACHO to identify and promote good practice in the management of mould and dampness. In the meantime, you may find it helpful to look at the Housing Ombudsman’s report on damp and mould which was published last year.

If you identify any concerns with your current systems please contact your lead regulator to discuss how you will plan to make necessary improvements.



Helen Shaw

Director of Regulation