Level 3 – Basic habitation

Human housing that has reasonable protection from the effects of climate and coarse control of the interior environment through basic heating or ventilation. In your action plan, include appropriate elements from previous levels.


Fair enclosure: western-style housing up to the early s; public buildings such as churches, palaces, etc. Average maintained historic civic buildings, temples, shrines.

Plan B



Garden landscapes, walkways, lanes, streets. Drainage into open ditches, roadways, rudimentary sewer

Plan B

Limit the growth of trees and shrubs against the structure to protect vulnerable foundations against damage from encroaching plant roots.


Reasonable attempt to fully enclose the building to protect it from bad weather to make a liveable building with some comfort during the annual climate cycle. Gaps generally small if building has basic heating, but exterior cladding may allow determined or occasional rodent access. Has single doors for entry, loose-fitting sash windows, possibly no screens. Internal partition walls have crevices along the floor that can house insect life. Open fireplaces, flues, hollow space under floors, and roughly finished attics allow bird, rodent, and insect access into structural voids. Some natural ventilation is possible to alter interior temperature or humidity, but there is no air conditioning system.

Plan B

Use screen doors and screens on windows to reduce insect entry and allow ventilation. Reduce structural gaps and spaces around habitually used openings (doors, windows) to under 5 mm to limit rodent entry. Ensure eavestrough has outflow pipes to carry water well away from foundations, which will reduce potential for mould growth. Screen unused flues at the roof level to block bird and insect access. Use heavy gauge, plastic sheet “soil covers” over enclosed earthen-floor crawl spaces. Ensure good, screened ventilation of this space to further reduce its humidity, otherwise wooden structural elements will be susceptible to fungal and insect attack.

Portable fittings

Some objects are displayed inside the building as they were originally used (historic interior), and others are stored in closed rooms on shelves, in slightly or fully open boxes. Some objects may be stored in cabinets for security, but the enclosure’s resistance to pests is generally poor.

Plan B

Place objects vulnerable to insects in well-sealed display or storage cabinets (ensure that any gaps are less than 0.3 mm). Consider operating portable dehumidifiers to restrict relative humidity to under 75% over a short, damp period (i.e. 2 months), and under 65% in year-round, high-humidity climates. Consider using polyethylene bag enclosures (installed during dry season), or fabric covers for soft items in storage to reduce pest incidence. Delicate items should be placed in lidded boxes or cabinets.


Spring and fall cleaning, household vacuuming, and dusting exhibits may also occur when build-up of dirt is noticed.

Plan B

Do not place objects in underground areas if you cannot ensure good ventilation or flood control. Inspect attic and basement areas annually for severe pest problems. These spaces often fulfil a pest's needs more than the inhabited floors do.


Multiple rooms can be affected, chronic outbreaks of paper and fabric pests could be supported. Storage in damp basements or hot attics are retrograde choices for object survival.

Plan B

Reduced chronic fly and dermestid problems because of increased control over attic space. Reduced silverfish and mouse problems because of increased control over conditions in basement and crawl spaces.

Expected deterioration

Anticipated effects appear within an equivalent time to the building’s lifetime on robust objects, within decades to a century on soft materials, and within years on delicate materials.

Plan B

Reduced rodent, insect, and fungal damage because of increased sealing of the building and routine sanitation activity.

CCI Technical Bulletin 29.

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