Timber rot was a major problem in some Perth homes. A survey a few years ago suggested that houses in Subiaco, Ardross, Floreat, Nedlands and Mosman Park were most likely to suffer from timber rot.
This incidence of timber rot is not surprising as it usually occurs in older homes and caused by a lack of regular maintenance to visible faults like leaking roofs and/or a lack of ventilation. Rotting timber in balconies and structural beams especially in outside locations can be extremely dangerous. Moreover, tree rot which occurs due to failure by home owners to fix leaky roofs can lead to rotting timbers, damaged plaster and ceilings and additional expenses associated with this collateral damage.
Timber rot occurs when the timber cannot cope with regular wetting and drying that might emerge with prolonged wet and wintry weather or poor ventilation. The problem usually occurs in soft woods. Jarrah and cedar are less of a problem. External use of untreated pine in pergolas and resulting timber rot was a problem some years ago but has now been addressed by the industry through the use of treated (LOSP) pine.
A regular maintenance program is required to prevent timber rot, including attendance to paintwork to ensure that timbers are continually protected from excessive moisture.