Understanding Housing Defects  book cover
4th Edition

Understanding Housing Defects

ISBN 9780080971124
Published February 13, 2014 by Estates Gazette
560 Pages 255 Color Illustrations

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Book Description

Understanding Housing Defects provides a concise, coherent and comprehensive introduction to the causes, investigation and diagnosis of defects in domestic buildings.

For this new edition, many of the chapters have been substantially updated and new photographs have been added. There are four new chapters covering:

  • How defects are defined
  • An overview of building and architectural history
  • External joinery and painted finishes
  • Environmental and health- related building problems

Many of the 21 chapters cover a specific building element and include a brief introduction setting out construction principles and the evolution of current practice. All of the chapters consider the identification, cause and diagnosis of common (and sometimes not so common) defects. This book is a must have for all those students and practitioners who require a broad understanding of housing defects.

Building surveyors, general practice surveyors, architects, estate agents, housing officers and anyone involved in the management and maintenance of property as well as its construction will benefit hugely from this highly informative full-colour text. Written by the authors of The Construction of Houses, the book is also the natural companion to this bestselling textbook.

Table of Contents

1. Understanding Defects – an introduction   2. Building history   3. Building Movement – Foundations   4. Building Movement -Walls   5. The investigation of structural defects   6. External Walls –Brickwork and Stonework   7. Ground Floors   8. Upper Floors   9. Pitched Roofs   10. Flat Roofs   11. External Rendering   12. Plastering and Plasterboard   13. Internal walls and partitions   14. External joinery   15. Timber Pests   16. Dampness   17. System Building   18. Environmental and health- related building problems   19. Water and Heating   20. Drainage   21. Electrical Installations

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Duncan Marshall, BSc, MCIOB, MIMBM was a Chartered Builder and Senior Lecturer at the University of the West of England, UK.

Derek Worthing, BSc, MPhil, MRICS is a Chartered Building Surveyor and was formerly a Principal Lecturer at the University of the West of England, UK. He now works as a consultant and a Visiting Lecturer. He is also a Visiting Professor at Uppsala University in Sweden.

Roger Heath, FRICS, FFB is a Chartered Building Surveyor and was formerly a Senior Lecturer at the University of the West of England, UK. He now works as a Visiting Lecturer.

Nigel Dann, BSc, MSc, MIOC, ICIOB was a Senior Lecturer at the University of the West of England, UK, and now works as a consultant and Visiting Lecturer in the UK, France and Belgium (KU Leuven).


"Having used the companion text, The Construction of Houses, to teach first year undergraduate Building Technology for many years I came late to Understanding Housing Defects but since discovering this excellent book I have used it extensively to teach building pathology at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. The book has been very well received by my students." Mike Hoxley, Professor of Building Surveying, Nottingham Trent University and former editor of Structural Survey

"Such a wealth of knowledge is rare to find in a book which makes it a ‘must own’ for students pursuing their undergraduate degree within a construction discipline. The full colour illustrations bring home what often goes wrong in the building process. The book not only proffers alternative solutions and unrivalled knowledge, but is an ideal desk copy for lecturers and professional builders and even ordinary home owners trying to upgrade the energy performance of their homes or first time developers looking to resolve some of the challenges associated with converting older properties." Dr Joseph Kangwa, Senior Lecturer, Leeds Metropolitan University, UK

"… this is a well written, informative and well documented reference book providing a great starting point for anyone observing building defects and a very likely source of a suitable solution for many." – Stephen McDonald, SelfBuild & Improve Magazine

"This book is a feast for the eyes with numerous photographs, drawings and details, a must for any Building Surveyor." Amazon.co.uk customer

"Concisely written and easy to understand." Amazon.co.uk customer

"Brilliantly clear… Well-written with great drawings and advice." Amazon.co.uk customer