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Cleaner possibly getting council flat?

(49 Posts)
flossiesnooks Tue 21-Feb-17 09:32:29

What should I think about this? Our cleaner has been working here for several years, cash in hand. As she has had free accommodation with an elderly lady who needed some care, she has managed to save a lot of money and now owns two properties in Poland. The elderly lady has died and soon she will need to find her own accommodation (in London). She told me that she is planning to tell the council she is homeless so she can get council accommodation. Are you technically homeless if you own properties abroad? Is this fair given the pressure on council housing in London?

QuestionableMouse Tue 21-Feb-17 09:34:09

I think it's none of your business and if she's only working as a cleaner, she's unlikely to be able to afford a private rental or mortgage in London.

juneau Tue 21-Feb-17 09:35:46

I very much doubt she'll just be given a council flat - no one else is these days! Council waiting lists are often 10 years long and priority is given to people with children, disabilities, etc. Where I live (just outside London), you have to meet extremely strict criteria to even be added to the housing list. I suspect the best she can hope for is 30 days in temporary accommodation and then she'll have to sort herself out.

RaisinsAndApple Tue 21-Feb-17 09:36:01

If she hasn't any children she doesn't have a hope.
Of course she shouldn't be housed if she owns other properties. You shouldn't be paying her cash in hand, but I guess you like the saving...

Deadsouls Tue 21-Feb-17 09:36:07

Do you think it's fair is the question? It seems to have annoyed you or you wouldn't have posted about it?

peggyundercrackers Tue 21-Feb-17 09:36:41

why ask a question you know the answer to?

Gowgirl Tue 21-Feb-17 09:37:34

Why is it any of your business, life isn't fair!

Lostwithinthehills Tue 21-Feb-17 09:37:50

I know next to nothing about housing services but I would hazard a guess that a single adult woman without any additional needs would be second to last on the housing list, just in front of a single adult man. So with the social housing crisis in London I think your cleaner will just be offered some kind of hostel place.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Tue 21-Feb-17 09:38:58

I doubt she will actually be given anything, far more likely she will just be added to the bottom of a very long list.
If she is planning to lie on a form I would not want her as my cleaner, because if she's shown she's not honest my trust would be impaired. I don't know what declarations she would have to make, though.

piginboots Tue 21-Feb-17 09:40:03

If you're that worried about fairness I would suggest that you shouldn't be paying her cash in hand.

MovingOnUpMovingOnOut Tue 21-Feb-17 09:43:44

Living for free or live in carer?

So what if she has property in Poland? She can't go and live in one and still turn up every week for your cash in hand job.

Do you not have a coal bunker or a cupboard under the stairs you could give her in lieu of the cash in hand? Obviously she would have to make up the difference hmm

PurpleDaisies Tue 21-Feb-17 09:47:22

How do you know she's not declaring her income? As a private tutor I'm often paid in cash. Every single penny is reported to HMRC.

The assumption that everyone who gets paid cash is a tax fidget really pisses me off.

PurpleDaisies Tue 21-Feb-17 09:47:51

Tax fidget?!! That's supposed to say tax dodger.

MargotLovedTom1 Tue 21-Feb-17 09:48:19

grin at this being posted in Ethical Dilemmas when you freely admit to paying her cash in hand. Was that an ethical dilemma too wink?

LaPharisienne Tue 21-Feb-17 09:48:25

Just because you pay her cash doesn't mean she doesn't pay tax. Just because she is made homeless doesn't mean she'll get a council house.

I suspect what will happen is she'll get help with her housing costs, which is fine, because otherwise london would have no cleaners, shop workers, builders...

MargotLovedTom1 Tue 21-Feb-17 09:51:09

"PurpleDaisies* fair enough, we shouldn't assume. However loads of one man band cleaners are paid cash in hand. I'd be interested to see what proportion are declaring this income.

MargotLovedTom1 Tue 21-Feb-17 09:54:22

I think the way the OP has worded it, suggesting that the cash in hand cleaning along with free accommodation has enabled the cleaner to save money, suggests that she has not been paying tax on it. Why mention the cash in hand otherwise?

ClashCityRocker Tue 21-Feb-17 10:01:02

On paper she has as much chance of getting a council flat in London as she has of learning how to plait piss.

I'm not sure if her owning a property abroad would disqualify her or not.

MagicMoments22 Tue 21-Feb-17 10:02:07

why are you enabling her by giving her cash in hand?

DevelopingDetritus Tue 21-Feb-17 10:04:20

Well it sounds like you've been condoning it OP with regards to paying the cash in hand.

IsItMeOr Tue 21-Feb-17 10:05:26

Don't worry OP, she has no chance of getting a council flat in London, unless she has children living with her who you haven't mentioned.

She'll be entitled to housing benefit if she meets the criteria, but that's not your problem.

If I were you I'd reflect on your baulking at her exploiting the system by not declaring her income and assets, when you have been complicit in it...

squishysquirmy Tue 21-Feb-17 10:09:51

The accommodation wasn't really "free" if she was a live in carer - it was earnt by the work she did. Asking for a council assistance does not mean she will get it , as others have pointed out.

BeMorePanda Tue 21-Feb-17 10:13:13

She told me that she is planning to tell the council she is homeless so she can get council accommodation.
She is being extremely naieve - both by telling you this and by expecting to be housed by council! Was she born yesterday? But yeah OP you should butt out.

Re paying cleaners cash I don't get all the comments here - everyone I have ever known who has a cleaner (not to mention 100's of thread on MN) pays them in cash - usually left out for the cleaner on the day. So now I'm wondering how the moral police on this thread pay their cleaners if not with filthy filthy cash.

BeMorePanda Tue 21-Feb-17 10:13:48

I'm not sure if her owning a property abroad would disqualify her or not
Absolutely it would

sashh Tue 21-Feb-17 10:15:04

Our cleaner has been working here for several years, cash in hand.

So you are happy to avoid tax and break the law and help her to break the law but you object to her having a home?

|Tell the council about the properties if you want, but be ready for the HMRC to investigate you and send you a bill.

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