In an exclusive interview with Express.co.uk, Homes Under The Hammer star Martin Roberts confessed to spending time in his fair share of barely inhabitable homes. The Strictly The Real Full Monty star was left incredulous about how anyone could have braved such tough conditions.
“I’ve seen about five or six hoarder homes over the years,” he admitted.
“You wonder how on earth people could have been living in there… it’s horrifying!”
“It is like those extreme hoarder type programmes where there’s just a small space for the chair, surrounded by years, and years, and years of rubbish piled around it.
“Often [these are] properties which have maybe had animals kept inside, so you can imagine the kind of smell and the state that they’re in!”
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This week, Martin began a new campaign with the Gas Safe Register to help raise awareness of the perils of failing to keep up maintenance in the home.
The caring star, who also fronts a children’s charity and dared to bare all in a striptease for Strictly The Real Full Monty in support of a close pal who died of bowel cancer, is highlighting all the problems that can crop up in people’s homes, if left unresolved.
Out of control mould, carbon monoxide poisoning from leaky boilers, flooding, and many more disasters are all issues that he has witnessed over the years.
He admits: ” After 20 years in property, I’ve heard every shoulda, woulda, coulda going when it comes to regrets about dealing with niggles too late.”
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As part of the Winter House Whispers campaign, he has identified the top costly problems blighting homes, including rotting decking (which costs an average of £3,344 per home to fix if left unmaintained), followed by lazy yellow flames on gas appliances, black sooty marks or stains on and around them, leaky pipes, and boilers that make rattling and banging sounds.
He also advises: “Things like guttering [will] save thousands and thousands of pounds of damage in the future if you just do some regular maintenance.
“Just check there’s air flow, so you don’t get damp, make sure you check for blocked gutters, blocked drains….”
He is raising awareness that a lack of maintenance and the temptation to cut corners to save money can ironically end up being more costly in the long run, setting the average household back almost £2,000 a year.
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