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Am I asking the impossible?

(8 Posts)
Rockmaiden Thu 02-Dec-10 01:43:27

I've been looking to rent for over a year now and getting nowhere, is what I want really that hard to find?

A large 2 or standard 3 bedroom house, has to have a back garden / yard but size not important anywhere in Cheshire. Rent up to around £600 a month.

The problem is I need someone that will accept pets and PARTIAL payments in housing benifit.

I think most landlords see people claiming housing benefit as lazy scum bags but it isn't always true!

I'm a single mother, I do work but due to a low wage / single income I get a small amount of help with my rent. It seems no-one will accept me due to this!

I'm considering giving the housing benefit up and paying the full rent myself but it will be more of a struggle.

Also the pets put a lot of people off, despite the fact that I am willing to pay a higher deposit, have references for my pets from previous landlords / neighbours / vets and trainers and am willing to have the carpets / curtains professionally cleaned on leaving seems to mean nothing!

Where am I going wrong and what can I do to improve my chances?

violethill Thu 02-Dec-10 08:02:50

What are average prices in the area? Because a maximum of £600 pr month sounds absurdly cheap to me- are you sure 2/3 bed houses can be found for that amount?
As for housing benefit, its not about landlords thinking people receiving it are 'scum' . You'll probably find most of them have their hands tied, with mortgages which don't allow them to do that, or insurance policies which would cost them more. Yes, you probably would find it easier if you are paying your whole rent yourself tbh

As for pets - again, its something that will limit your options. Not make it impossible- but certainly harder

lalalonglegs Thu 02-Dec-10 10:01:05

Doesn't the HB go to you so, if you didn't want to, you wouldn't have to tell the LL about it? Agree with violethill that many LLs are not allowed to take people on HB. I don't know if that price is realistic or not as I don't know how it compares with rents locally. The pets are going to be a problem - even well-behaved ones can create a smell and scratch fittngs and furniture. Have you thought about advertising for a LL: "I need a 2/3 bedroom house with some outside space in such and such area. I can pay up to X and have excellent references. I have xx children and x well-behaved dogs/cats."

Rockmaiden Fri 03-Dec-10 03:56:06

That's a fair decent rent round here actually, we pay £420 a month now and average is around £500.

When looking on rightmove and such there are hundreds of houses in budget and suitable but they all say no to either housing benifit or pets.

The benifit is to me yes but I believe it has to be declared to landlord?

It's only £20 a week so may just give it up instead.

Is there anything I can do to make landlords more likely to rent to me?

I'll even replace the bloody carepets when I leave at this rate as so desperate to find somewhere!

For what it's worth i'm renting un-furnished so any furniture damaged (not that they do) is all mine and I am obsessively clean.

I am more than happy to invite any prospective landlord round to my current home to see that it is not damaged and does not stink of dog etc.

I sometimes wonder if I should tell a little fib about the dog breed. There have been one or two houses where it says 'pets considered' but I have been refused once they know what pets.

Should I perhaps say a large mixed breed rather than a Rottweiler as that can sound worse with negative perceptions to the breed.

violethill Fri 03-Dec-10 06:46:56

I wouldn't lie about the dog breed, as you could easily get found out, and then your landlord is likely to give you notice and you won't even get a decent reference.

TBH many landlords just won't want a large dog, end of. Whether they have negative perceptions or not (and I guess while some might, there are others who might own rottweiler's themselves and love the breed) letting a house is a separate issue. If there are clients out there who will pay the going rate without the potential problem of pets, then they'll go for those as tenants first.

As for the HB - for £20 top up per week, I would seriously consider not claiming and just paying the whole rent, if that means you have a far better choice of properties.

But I think pets will always be a big disadvantage.

violethill Fri 03-Dec-10 07:42:34

Sorry, you didn't mean lie about the breed , but withold information. I still think the same though- if you say you have a big dog, most ll probably won't be interested.

Rockmaiden Sat 04-Dec-10 01:29:38

Do you think the problem is the size of the dog then?

Don't see how it matters as a small dog is no better than large dog from a behaviour / cleanliness point of view.

At least the house will be safe from theft with a great big dog in it

I think I will give up the housing benifit but not willing to give up my dog and that seems to be the bigger problem.

Other than what I am already offering is there anything I can do to make my dog more accepted, pay a higher rent etc?

Been to view one today that would have been great but they said no to me as think the elderly neighbours (who are relatives of the landlord) will not be happy with a same-sex couple living there!

So it seems i'm too gay, too poor and my dog is too big, smelly and destructive for me to live anywhere!

I can honestly say if I was a landlord it'd be the kids I was more worried about, now they are messy, loud, destructive etc.

Thankfully mine have gone past that stage, phew!

violethill Sat 04-Dec-10 12:24:36

Good god that's shocking that a landlord said that, and also very surprising that they'd admit to it!

Re: the dog. No, I don't think the size of dog matters. Landlords are going to be put off by pets (and children) because of the potential problems. At the end of the day, if there are other people without pets and children willing to pay the rent, they are a more attractive proposition. Most private rentals state 'no pets', it's just how it is.At the end of the day, it's someone else's house, which they may well want as their future home.

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