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Rental housing help!

(34 Posts)
Wheresthemissingsqueakyegg Tue 28-Feb-17 13:44:35

Today I've been served with a section 21 - I've got two months now to get out.
The landlady has advised I need to get out as she is splitting up with the landlord and needs a home for her and her children (the council won't house her as she owns a property)
I'm unable to rent privately at present as I don't have the funds to secure a deposit /agency fees or months rent upfront and I went bankrupt a few months ago so that wouldn't go in my favour either!
I've tried contacting shelter to no avail - there phone lines are always busy and I've tried phoning at different times of the day etc
I've got a 5 week old baby and a 18 month old and I'm petrified as to where we will end up - it's causing me a great deal of stress and I've been up since 3am worrying about what might happen
Just wondered if anyone has any advice?
I'm registered with my local council but am bottom of the bands for bidding on council properties

Thisrabbitthatrabbit Tue 28-Feb-17 13:48:46

You and your landlord are in a very complicated position now. The council will advise you to stay put past the eviction date and essentially wait for your landlord to take you to court and get bailiffs to come and remove you. If you leave of your own accord before then, then as far as they are concerned you are making yourself intentionally homeless (an awful policy).

I would continue to try and get through to shelter. Is there any family you could stay with whilst saving for a deposit and fees?

Setterlover Tue 28-Feb-17 13:56:50

Where in the Uk do you live?
You would be housed in a very short time where i live given your situation as long as you weren't fussy where.
SE clearly different. But there is not really a shortage of council houses in some areas

Wheresthemissingsqueakyegg Tue 28-Feb-17 14:00:19

I know, it's far from ideal 😓
She has asked if I can get out sooner ideally as she has a number of health issues which are being made worse by being unable to leave where she is
Private rental isn't an option as I'm unable to get a guarantor and have spoken to a number of letting. Agents who have explained this is the process for people who've been bankrupt and they would also require more of a deposit (I currently get some housing benefit as well which many landlords aren't happy to accept)
I'm gutted I have no where else I could stay either sad

dalmatianmad Tue 28-Feb-17 14:05:25

Sorry haven't read every reply in detail, have you spoken to anyone at the Housing dept at the Council?
Ours do a scheme where they pay the deposit etc and you pay back at a very low rate each month.....

I was lucky enough to get a HA property in a lovely area, only waited a few weeks but I suppose it depends where you live and what the demand is for council/HA properties.

Good luck I'm sure it'll all work out OK op.

Setterlover Tue 28-Feb-17 14:09:37

My local authority have good sized 2 bed flats and also maisonettes that you can just apply to live in. No bidding necessary, I'm not even sure if you need to live in the area.
They aren't even in dodgy places. Just that there is no shortage of them
Pm me if this may help

dalmatianmad Tue 28-Feb-17 14:25:32

Setter I think mine have similar, I think know there's a misconception about how difficult it is to get a council/HA property. Unless it's where I live? (Derbyshire)

Setterlover Tue 28-Feb-17 14:30:33

It's relatively easy to get something here.
As long as you aren't fussy. But I just looked at the list and there are 2 and 3 bed brand new houses in a rural location that nobody wanted his week confused

Mostly people want to live in the towns for transport. But there is a bus!

Normally bidding takes place and then the properties not let are put into the 'open market' where anyone can apply. Not just those on their 'list' and given banding

FuzzyBoots Tue 28-Feb-17 14:42:20

I suppose it depends on your area, but I work in my council housing office and for us, although what thisrabbit says is true in that we would always advise tenants of their right to stay until bailiffs - they don't HAVE to do this and they wouldn't be considered intentionally homeless if they don't.

Do the council housing know you've had a s21? We usually bump up priority for those who have been issued with one, we'd just need to see it along with a few other documents to make sure its legal, so tell them if you haven't already.

Wheresthemissingsqueakyegg Tue 28-Feb-17 14:54:53

I'm in the SW and council properties are like gold dust! I was going to go to the council tommorow and show them it so they can take a copy!
Good to know they wouldn't class it officially as intentionally homeless despite what they might say (I know someone else who left on their given date and it was sorted for them fairly quickly) but this had been a big concern of mine!
Hoping I won't have to take my little one out of nursery too but guess it just depends on where they decide to put us!

Thanks for the info, I will look into it!!

Pinbasket Tue 28-Feb-17 15:08:04

I don't think it's useful for posters to be telling the op about how easy it is to get rehoused in their particular home areas. The op has said she hasn't got the money to rent privately, and won't be able to get rehoused by any local authority in an area that she doesn't already have a very close connection to, or is already living in.
Fuzzyboots has given good advice to let the local council know about the section 21.
The worst scenario is that you will be offered short term emergency housing, but that will eventually lead to a more permanent offer, which I hope will be a happy home for you all.

EnormousTiger Tue 28-Feb-17 15:58:16

I was back at full time work when I had a 5 week old baby and toddler. Would that be an option for you and then perhaps you could earn enough to pay your rent rather than using public funds?

dalmatianmad Tue 28-Feb-17 16:03:26

Enormoustiger? hmm
How is that helpful? Op is asking for housing advice, if she wanted employment advice she would have asked for it, foxtrot Oscar somewhere else.....

scurryfunge Tue 28-Feb-17 16:05:04

Bloody hell EnormousTiger shock

EnormousTiger Tue 28-Feb-17 16:05:23

I thought if she worked full time she could save a deposit for another private rented housing place. Surely earning money for most of us should always be the solution not taking money from tax payers like other mumsnetters! Have we really moved to such a taking society rather than it being shameful to be subsidised by the state!

unfortunateevents Tue 28-Feb-17 16:12:45

Enormoustiger perhaps you might also like to advise the OP where she is going to find childcare for a 5 week old??? angry Oh and how much she might need to earn in order to pay for childcare for two children and save for a deposit - oh as well as paying her current rent and living?

Thisrabbitthatrabbit Tue 28-Feb-17 17:09:47

I'm pleased to hear that councils don't insist you stay until bailiffs turn up. My brother has been told that from the local council. Perhaps they have different rules. Could you move away from your current area OP?

Wheresthemissingsqueakyegg Tue 28-Feb-17 17:13:37

I am employed but on maternity leave at the moment, if I go back to work full time now I would earn just enough to pay for their childcare let alone other bills! my little one goes to nursery two days a week and that costs £400 a month so I can only imagine the costs with two children there 5 days a week! Circumstances have ment I'm in this situation currently and I'm very grateful the 'safety net' of housing benefit is there - rental properties in my area are upwards of £850 per month but thanks for your comment

Wheresthemissingsqueakyegg Tue 28-Feb-17 17:15:00

I've been looking into other areas, but again with housing help from council you generally need to have a connection to the area sadly!

ThePants999 Wed 01-Mar-17 16:33:44

IMO you got the best advice in your very first reply - Thisrabbitthatrabbit was spot on.

Despite what Fuzzy says, different councils may be different and your council may be among those that will consider you "intentionally homeless" if you leave your current property before legally required to. That needs to be avoided at all costs, so see the process through to the end.

Do not leave your current property when the section 21 notice expires. Wait for the landlady to go to court for a possession order, and then to get bailiffs. You'll sadly have to pay her court & bailiff costs, which I think are in the region of £270, but once evicted the council will provide you with emergency accommodation.

specialsubject Thu 02-Mar-17 13:50:34

There is nothing shelter can do. Spend your time talking to the council.

Fees went up last year because they can, here are the actual figures. Court costs £355, bailiff £120, solicitor if used by landlord £600. Rarely enforced, but let's hope you do have a council who will help with just the section 21.

Keep the landlady posted as she could be waiting up to a year if you are in London.

MGFM Fri 03-Mar-17 21:50:28

Well, I would be taking my 18 month old out of nursery for a start. That's £400 down the drain every month. And I say that as someone who has second baby when first was 18 months old and stopped nursery as soon as Mat leave started as we could afford to pay for nursery and be on mat leave. Baby and toddler and home really isn't too bad. We have survived.

MGFM Fri 03-Mar-17 21:51:01

Couldn't afford*

Wheresthemissingsqueakyegg Thu 09-Mar-17 17:35:54

So I would be liable for the fees they incur to instruct balifs, legal costs etc?
Not in London!
Would happily take my DS out of nursery however nursery spaces where I live are few and far between, with long waiting lists etc, and I don't drive but intend on going back to work in September

Vajazzler Thu 09-Mar-17 17:50:10

I had this problem last year.
In March we were served the S21 which ended on May 3rd. I told the landlord that we were unable to find another rental (despite having great refs and could afford it! The minute letting agents hear you have 5 kids they practically put the phone down on you!)
Our council told us in no uncertain terms not to leave the property until the bailiffs arrive.
The landlord applied to the court for a possession order which took 5 weeks and that order told us we had 2 weeks to leave. We also couldn't leave on that date. Once that date arrived they could apply for a bailiffs warrant. We received a letter giving us that date week before it . We were finally evicted on 22nd August.
It cost us £355 in court fees.
The morning that the bailiffs were due was the morning the council would help us and we were housed in temporary accommodation while we bid on properties. We were lucky enough that a 3.5 bed house came up to bid on within a few weeks and we were successful in our bid. We were finally housed permanently on the 23rd October.

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