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to think council housing is a last resort

(150 Posts)
nailak Wed 08-May-13 20:03:10

we have been given notice, everyone keeps saying go to council, but i don't want to deal with the uncertainty of being in temporary accommodation and not having a choice over where i live and so on, even though in the long run after a few years we would probably be better off once i am housed an am settled in a new area (which takes a couple of years to make friends). Am i being precious? Obviously we need like 3k for deposit and first months rent and we dont have that so need to find it etc, and if we have no choice then i will have to go down this route. But absolutely as a last resort. aibu?

TerraNotSoFirma Wed 08-May-13 22:09:28

You could get lucky and get somewhere lovely, you never know.

mrsjay Wed 08-May-13 22:10:31

and when you say but I pay full rent somebody will pipe up oh but it is subsidised isn't it so the tax payers are blah blah . baffles me how they can go on

chattychattyboomba Wed 08-May-13 22:11:33

If you are in need then council housing serves a purpose. I just resent paying 5 times more than my neighbours for our centrally located mid terraced house.

TerraNotSoFirma Wed 08-May-13 22:13:20

chatty do you own or privately rent, if you don't mind my asking?

needaholidaynow Wed 08-May-13 22:13:55

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

reelingintheyears Wed 08-May-13 22:17:11

I am sure that some people take advantage of the CH and benefits system,just like others take advantage of the tax system at the other end of the financial spectrum,but that does not mean that everyone in CH is a sponger.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 08-May-13 22:17:32

Social housing is actually for everyone that intended to live in it,that was always its intended reason for existing however due to the volume required they now allocate with fairly strict priority.

But this was not its intention its intention was to provide affordable decent housing for anyone who requested it and had nowhere else to live.

So no it shouldn't be a last resort but sadly due to snobbery it is considered to be.

reelingintheyears Wed 08-May-13 22:21:53

I thought HA's were started because there was so little CH left after so much had been sold off.

They are very strict and can and will evict if they need to.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 08-May-13 22:23:11

Chatty social rents are set at a discount of market rents on the area so they wouldn't be 5 times less than the private equivilent

chattychattyboomba Wed 08-May-13 22:24:00

We rent privately. My DH owns a property company in the west end of London. He rented a property to a man in one of the most exclusive mews houses in Chelsea who was originally training to become a teacher, quit his job, had 3 children so was entitled to claim £800 a week towards rent via DSS. Landlords usually don't mind as they get paid asking price, and the council guarantees the return of the house in the same condition (pay for any repairs etc).

expatinscotland Wed 08-May-13 22:24:27

That's very true, mrsjay. We are in a HA maisonette (there's no council here, the stock was all transferred to an HA a while back). We have invested loads of money into our home to make it home, flooring being the most expensive part of it, but also shelving and storage, internal doors, skirting boards, lighting fixtures. We pay rent and council tax and work. The vast majority of tenants in our building of 34 flats are the same. There are many families in here, all mostly in low-paid work - supermarkets, hotels/restaurants/tourism, care work, childcare.

Good, secure, affordable housing should not be only for those who can buy or those in quite high-paying jobs.

We look after our home and so do our neighbours. We look after one another, too, and are considerate of one another as these are flats.

chattychattyboomba Wed 08-May-13 22:26:55

I totally agree that good affordable housing should be for everyone- not just those in high paying jobs. I resent the inflation of London properties. The average property in Knightsbridge is now being valued at £2000 per square foot!

reelingintheyears Wed 08-May-13 22:30:37

expat,we live in private rental and have just put a new carpet on the stairs,we have put shelving and storage too,new lighting,(dp is an electrician) and pay our rent and CT ad nauseum.

Hey Ho,you want to make your home nice don't you.

sydlexic Wed 08-May-13 22:31:23

A member of my family moved into social housing last week. A brand new house with a stunning kitchen, nice doors and flooring, very large bathroom. I was shocked they have a lovely home. The house is Eco friendly and very inexpensive to run.

reelingintheyears Wed 08-May-13 22:33:29

sydlexic were you shocked because the place was nice?

purpleroses Wed 08-May-13 22:34:16

Chatty - it's untrue that anyone can claim £800 a week in housing benefit from the DSSs, and has been for about 15 years. Whoever told you that was either misinformed or lying.

Housing benefit even in London is capped at £340 a week for 3 bedroom houses, and soon to be much less when Universal Credit comes in.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 08-May-13 22:38:49

Chatty I'm very sorry but unless it was a long time ago ( like pre 2003) then no he didnt.

Since 2003 private renters can not claim housing benefit they have to claim local housing allowence this has set rates granted Chelsea is one of the highest in the country but the largest property he would have been entitled to claim for would be a 3 bed even today in that area the apsolute max he would be able to claim in LHA for a 3 bed (the only size he would be able to claim for) would be £347 per week. As far as I recall it was about £80 pw less in 2003.

chattychattyboomba Wed 08-May-13 22:40:14

Purple roses. I just asked my husband to confirm this. It was about 5 years ago. Perhaps there were other circumstances but he has no reason to lie.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 08-May-13 22:41:41

Reeling the difference between you and expat is you did it to make your home nice. She had to do it because social housing is supplied as effectively a bare shell unless you are lucky enough to get a HA new build and then you get kitchen and bathroom Lino but nothing else.

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 08-May-13 22:47:23

Chatty there are absolutely no other circumstances whatsoever that would allow a private renter to claim any more than the max LHA rates. Even if he was able to claim for a 4 bed the LHA rate for that is £408 pw.

His wife could have been pregnant with 17 babies and they still wouldn't get more.he could have no legs a purple head spend his spare time saving puppies from house fires and have fled a war torn country and still only get the max LHA

chattychattyboomba Wed 08-May-13 22:51:35

If you say so. He must have dreamt it wink I'm off to bed.

expatinscotland Wed 08-May-13 22:58:20

Our mates have a lovely council flat. They've put a lot of work into it. He works FT as a 911 dispatcher and she works FT in a pet shop, but in the 3rd most expensive city in the UK.

I'm glad they have a nice, stable home for their family of themselves and their two children.

I think everyone should. Not as just a 'last resort'.

Why shouldn't such people have a decent, affordable home with a stable tenancy?

reelingintheyears Wed 08-May-13 23:01:30

That's not actually true Sock,i know people in HA with laminate flooring and fitted kitchens and cupboards etc.
When DP and i improve our home it is eventually for the benefit of the LL,although obviously we want it to be nice for us.

We put a new carpet in but if we have to/want to move then the carpet gets left behind for the next tenant.

We have made the garden nice,planted and painted (the grotty walls) and bought a shed and made a decent area to sit in,so we can enjoy it.

nailak Wed 08-May-13 23:04:37

its not about anything against council houses tbh, or the areas they are in, yesterday i saw someone smoking crack outside the post office and someone else picking up green at the park gates so my area is not the best of areas.

It is the fact that if they put me in temporary accomodation (which I live in London so can be years) they can put me anywhere, accross 4 boroughs, away from my friends, family, the life and community that I have built up here, my kids schools, and i will have to start from scratch again, I worked so hard to make relationships, get involved in community stuff over here. And the uncertainty of not being able to plan, to know if where I live will easily let me travel to family, shops etc, and also in temp accomodation they dont let you see it first, you have to take what they got. The whole idea scares me.

I would do anything to avoid this situation, as i dont think i can emotionally handle it.

whatamardarse Wed 08-May-13 23:05:23

YABU - There is nothing wrong with council houses. Beggars cant be choosers when your about to be homeless...or even looking for affordable living space when your not on mega money!

oh how the other half live hey? hmm

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