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Council obligation to house

(38 Posts)
Lime19 Sun 03-Dec-17 18:02:08

Help me settle an argument. I've posted about this relative previously (in terms of benefits she might get which mumsnetters informed me, pretty much nothing). We think the relative has aspergers (not formally diagnosed, she's refusing to go to dr or seek help, we are all extremely concerned for her. If you try to reason with her she cuts you out her life.). She's in her 30s, has now lost her job and seems to think the council will just give her a lovely flat for free when she gets evicted. I think this will not happen.

What exactly does the council have an obligation to do? Surely there's a wait list? And they don't have enough houses/flats to go round?

Aibu to think it's not just that simple?

SantanicoPandemonium Sun 03-Dec-17 18:04:34

If she's genuinely homeless, then they have an obligation to house her. However, this could be in a hostel or b&b for a lengthy period of time.

shakeyourcaboose Sun 03-Dec-17 18:04:51

They do have an duty of care but each local authority may do things differently. (i think!) you are best going on to her councils website and search 'homelessness'.

TrojansAreSmegheads Sun 03-Dec-17 18:04:57

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ivykaty44 Sun 03-Dec-17 18:07:04

If your relative is evicted for not paying her rent - then she will have made herself homeless

Why would the council put her in accommodation that she will then run up debt of not paying rent?

Your relatives best option is to apply for UC and start paying towards her rent where she is AND out herself on the housing scheme with district council

If then she is evicted for not paying all of her rent but having paid as much as she can - then she will be put in temporary accommodation if she’s lucky

Then she will be reassessed and possibly get supported or a bedsit who knows

Namethecat Sun 03-Dec-17 18:07:55

I'd also say it's depending on her finances. If you have enough to afford a private let even if it's a bedsit then that's where they will suggest she goes.

ThisLittleKitty Sun 03-Dec-17 18:08:05

There is a waiting list but it depends where she lives as to how long that will be. She will only be priority if she falls into a priority banned. Homeless in itself isn't priority in my area, you would need to be homeless with children for example.

Lime19 Sun 03-Dec-17 18:11:34

We are at a loss as to what to do with her. She cuts all family out. She has it in her head to move up north (where it is cheaper) but she has zero money! She has no job. She is rude and has a tone when she talks that makes me and others so frustrated (realise this is part of her condition). She has trashed her current house because she doesn't clean it, and keeps cats that poo everywhere, has painted walls horrid colours and it genuinely full of crap and rubbish. She will likey owe a lot for repairs. It's ridiculous to think she can move miles away alone with no funds.

FlouncyDoves Sun 03-Dec-17 18:14:49

I’d say that if she doesn’t have a formal diagnosis and no dependents then the council has no obligation to her.

ivykaty44 Sun 03-Dec-17 18:16:03

To be housed by any district council you need a connect with the area - relatives, work

Unless DV

So moving up north is fine if private renting is her objective

HoneyIshrunkthebiscuit Sun 03-Dec-17 18:17:29

Council have an obligation to house her however they may deem she has made herself intentionally homeless in which case they don't

Lime19 Sun 03-Dec-17 18:25:19

"Connected to area" there is no connection apart from another relative was born there 70 years ago. I doubt that is enough...

ImAMarshmellow Sun 03-Dec-17 18:25:42

She's probably better getting whatever benefits she's entitled to and trying to work out with her landlord a payment plan.

Council won't house her if she's been made 'intentionally homeless' so failure to pay rent.

If she speaks with CAB they should advise her on how to go about everything. If she wants a council property help her get on the list, but she may have to wait 20 yes, she may wait 2 months. Being unable to afford housing does bump her up the list somewhat. She can normally only 'reject' 2 properties before being kicked off the list.

ImAMarshmellow Sun 03-Dec-17 18:27:23

Also if she does move oooop norf' she may find landlords won't want someone who is behind on rent and unemployed.
Lots of properties near me (north east - the cheap bit) won't accept dss.

PencilsInSpace Sun 03-Dec-17 18:28:03

She needs to be:

1) eligible (i.e. allowed to live in the UK, no restriction on 'recourse to public funds')

2) homeless or at risk of homelessness in the next 28 days

3) in 'priority need' - with dependent children or pregnant, homeless because of fire or flood, or 'vulnerable', e.g. because of a disability or health condition.

4) not intentionally homeless - if she is evicted for non-payment of rent when she could have claimed HB/UC she'll be found intentionally homeless.

5) have a local connection.

If the council believe she is likely to satisfy the first 3 of these they have a duty to provide temporary accommodation while they investigate the last two. If they decide she satisfies all 5 they will have a duty to house, but depending on the area, this can mean a hostel for months or years, sometimes a long way out of area. Since 2012 councils have been permitted to discharge their duty to house by finding a 'suitable' offer of private rented accommodation. Some are already doing this but not all.

riceuten Sun 03-Dec-17 18:33:23

It would depend on her needs and her circumstances at the time of her eviction. A single - non-vulnerable - woman who didn’t pay her rent would be given short shrift. If she claims to have Spergies, but has no proof, they would presumably not believe her. Councils don’t (and haven’t for decades) have a ‘waiting list’ as such. They have a housing register where people’s needs are assessed and people are either rehoused or invited to bid for properties that come vacant, of which time on the register is but one component.

Huppopapa Sun 03-Dec-17 18:35:50

Only one of the preceding 14 answers is legally correct.
The council has a housing power (the waiting list) and a housing duty (homelessness provisions). The former now results in so few actual lettings as to be almost entirely vestigial.

In order to fall within the duty one has to be;
- homeless
- unintentionally so
- in priority need
- with a local connection (though if you satisfy the others, this will result in a referral to another authority)
- entitled to public funds

I doubt she will satisfy the jurisprudential definition of in priority need. If so, they will not be giving her anything.

In the event she did, she could well be sent somewhere else for a while (I know people who HAVE succeeded in applications to Wandsworth who have been in Redhill, Surrey for 2.5years and Walsall for 3. London boroughs are particularly grotesque but even South Hams or Barrow (-in-Furness) District Councils aren't sitting on a load of empty housing stock.

She needs to get real.

Eltonjohnssyrup Sun 03-Dec-17 18:36:04

No, they have no obligation to house her as she is a single person without diagnosed health problems. She will need to get a diagnosis do be entitled to housing. But as things stand they have no obligation to house her, she would be directed to hostels or might have to rough sleep. Criteria is here but from what you say she fits none:

If you will become homeless within 28 days your local authority (council) only has to re-house you immediately if you are one of the following:

a) You are a pregnant woman, (this includes anyone living with you).

b) You have children who rely on you financially and they need somewhere to live.

c) You need special help either because you are old, mentally disabled, physically disabled or other special reason.

d) You became homeless because of a flood, fire or another disaster.

e) You are a child aged 16 or 17 and you are not in local authority care, or recently left long-term care. (In Wales 16 or 17 year olds will be regarded as in priority need, regardless of whether or not they have been in care.)

f) Any person aged 18, 19 or 20 who is at particular risk of sexual or financial exploitation, (applies to Wales only).

g) Any person who is not yet 21 years old, but who was at any time between the ages of 16 and 18 being looked after, accommodated or fostered, but are no longer. This does not apply if that person is also in full-time, further or higher education, (social services would be responsible for accommodating those students), (this applies to England only).

h) Persons aged 21 or over who have become vulnerable as a result of having been looked after, accommodated or fostered, (this applies to England only).

i) A person who is 18, 19 or 20 and who has at any time been privately fostered, lived in a children's home or been in the care of a local authority, health authority or voluntary organisation, (this applies to Wales only).

j) Any victim of any form of violence, (except self-inflicted) who has left their home as a result of violence or threats and has become vulnerable as a result, (this applies to England only).

k) Any person who has been subject to domestic violence, is at risk of domestic violence or would be if he or she returns home, (this applies to Wales only).

l) A person who formerly served in the armed forces and has been homeless since leaving those forces, (this applies to Wales only).

m) Any person who is vulnerable as a result of having been a member of the regular naval, military or air force, (this applies to England only).

n) Any person who is a former prisoner and has been homeless since leaving custody and has a local connection with the area of the local authority to whom they apply, (this applies to Wales only).

o) Any person who is vulnerable as a result of having been in custody, (this applies to England only).

Huppopapa Sun 03-Dec-17 18:36:22

(now three of the preceding 16!)

Nottalotta Sun 03-Dec-17 18:38:00

The council has a duty to provide temporary accommodation, pending the outcome of a homeless application, to people in priority need (as listed above)

LIZS Sun 03-Dec-17 18:41:07

She might be best speaking to Shelter or a charity related to mh or sen if she is willing to follow it up. That was she may find someone who can make the relevant enquiries without her getting them offside by her attitude and offer support. As it stands she is unlikely to get rehoused by the Council.

RunningOutOfCharge Sun 03-Dec-17 18:46:59

Her current house?

How is she in a house? Private renting?

Kenzko Sun 03-Dec-17 18:47:45

I would contact your local mental health team if you think that she is not mentally competent.
I don't think the council would rehouse her if she makes herself what is called voluntarly homeless hope this helps a

Lime19 Sun 03-Dec-17 18:51:08

Sorry I should have been clearer. She's in a 2 bed flat now. Private rented. She is VERY behind in rent but due to a family connection her landlord put together a payment plan. It is a lovely flat or at least it was before she ruined it.

placebobebo Sun 03-Dec-17 19:33:02

The council only have a duty to house you if they have housing stock. More councils are turning their existing housing stock over to private housing associations, which although still count as social landlords, do not have the same obligation to house. They can use the intentionally homeless clause to wash their hands of you and the council can do the same if they no longer posses any houses in which to house you.

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