My feed

to access all these features


Council housing - move tenants subject to decreasing family size?

350 replies

whatever17 · 29/05/2011 00:47

Do you think that tenants in social housing should be moved after their family's have grown?

For instance, a family gets a 3 bed house then the kids grow up and leave. Should the parents be forced into a 1 bed property? SHould they have to leave their family home after 40 years?

If so, surely no one would have any pride in the property. If they feel they have "a home for life" they will beautify the garden and keep everything respectable.

Should the solution be that there is enough social housing for everyone in need?

OP posts:
DianaXXX · 15/11/2011 00:47

Iv been leaving in a one bedroom council flat for the past four years. Me and my boyfriend are On and of and with this attitude i don't even want him to stay around as my baby once born would need stability.
The issue now really is that, the flat that i live in is on a ground floor in a purporse build block with four flats downstairs and four upstairs. I'm downstairs in a middle of two neighbours. On one side I share the bedroom wall with an old neighbour of 80+ that smokes and drinks all day long and the smoke gets into my flat as the flats are small and the walls are thin. When I moved in 4 years ago he fell asleep with a fag and half of his flat got burned down so the council had to re do the whole flat including new windows. On the other side I have a mentally disable guy who makes noises at all hours of the night always poking his head in my windows and last year he nearly burned himself down as well, he has a mind of a 5 year old and no social worker or anything to help him with his issues which he clearly needs.
I was uncomfortable with these sort of neighbours for a while now but considered myself lucky for having a council flat, however now that I'm 26 weeks pregnant I am worried for the health and safety of my unborn child and i applied for rehousing. The council refused me on the grounds that's my reasons are insufficient. I'm really worried now & don't know what to do!
I think I should be rehoused to a safe environment and to a larger more suitable property for me and my child.
Any advise would help a lot, thank you for taking your time to respond x

worraliberty · 15/11/2011 01:28

Are you serious Diana?

You've chosen to start a family with a guy you're 'on and off' with whilst living in a one bedroom council flat and you think you should be 'rehoused to a safe environment and to a larger more suitable property for you and your child'?

World owing you a living much?

There is so much wrong with that attitude it's difficult to know where to begin.

You have a roof over your head. You've chosen to have a family. The Council owes you nothing more than they've already allocated you.

Sorry if it's not to your exact taste, but social housing is there to enable people to live....and not necessarily in exactly the sort of property that takes their fancy.

DianaXXX · 15/11/2011 01:43

Things were fine with me and the baby father for two years before I got pregnant.
And the reason I was even housed by council is due to abuse from young age, I spend 4 years in supportive housing before I was allocated where I am which was find till my circumstances have changed!
It's nothing to do with my fancy but health and safety! Im worried that one of them may burn their flat down again and me and the baby could be at the flat at the time.
I don't know where you get the perception that I think social housing owes me anything! I studied and worked all my life and it's the first time in on benefits for the past month! You certainly got me confused with the cheating lazy benefit scam that sit on their arse all day and expect to be fed of the system! Iv always contributed to the society and I believe that the system is in place for people that fall into hardship

TheFrogs · 15/11/2011 01:51

To be fair though Diana, unless you live in a detatched, there's always the chance your neighbour could burn your house down...

and i'm not judging you at all, I too find myself on benefit at present after working all my adult life.

worraliberty · 15/11/2011 01:53

I didn't mention benefits did I? Confused

Why should you be given a bigger property than a one bedroom flat because you've chosen to have a baby?

Why do you even need a bigger property than a one bedroom flat because you've chosen to have a baby?

As for your neighbours, they don't come with a guarantee no matter where you live.

DianaXXX · 15/11/2011 02:02

I do not expect anything and the size of the property if it would be a one or two bedroom flat is irrelevant what is important is the safety.
I realise that anyone could have bad neighbours however this is why there is diffident types of housing for people that cannot look after themselves and Put themselves and others around them at risk!
The council should be more aware and carful where they place particular groups of people!
As I said before I didn't get this flat because i just wanted one but due to domestic abuse, and again I don't feel that the world owes me anything but yet uk does have council housing and if it should be allocated to anyone it would be to people who need it the most

worraliberty · 15/11/2011 02:17

It is allocated to those who need it most.

You said you think you should have a 'larger and more suitable property' now you're having a baby.

I'm asking you why it needs to be larger in order to house a small baby?

Are you saying you should be 'exempt' in some way from living next door to someone with mental health issues or someone who is 80+ years old?

Because that's what you appear to be saying.

Good jobs and mortgages are very hard to come by nowadays, but until you're in the position to buy your own home, you have little choice than to continue in the one bedroom flat you're lucky to have.

The council can't be held responsible for every person who chooses to breed and then expects a bigger property or 'more suitable' neighbours. That was your choice to make and you made it.

TheFrogs · 15/11/2011 02:28

I find it hard to believe that someone with a mental age of 5 would be living alone. I'm not saying you're a liar Diane but if that really is the case then someone somewhere has royally fucked up and i'd be pretty concerned for him.

Spermysextowel · 15/11/2011 03:38

BBC London did a phone-in on this topic a while ago. I think they were disappointed on a couple of fronts. They were clearly keen to hear from 'poor old dears' who were going to be kicked out of the 'family' but council-owned home but had it pointed out by many callers that existing tenants are in fact safe as houses; the majority who rang told of how long they'd been on the list because larger homes just aren't available.

porcamiseria · 15/11/2011 09:04


and FFS there is a global recession


so bleating platitudes about social housing for all are just idealistic

we need to have far tighter controls, end of.

noone like the idea of booting oldies out, but lets face it everyone knows at least 4 people in SH thats too large for them

neighbours, couple in 3 bed house
ex CM, 3 of them in a 3 bed house
old lady opposite, 3 bed house
my old neighbour, kid has left home, has a 2 bed flat

and so on!!!!

Godf I would hate to see them turfed out, but something asint right that my taxes are allowing for them to pay £500 rent PCM either

WhyAlwaysFuckingMe · 15/11/2011 10:34

I do Health & Safety and what you saying its nothing to do with H&S. So do not try to be clever. Its asb and you have to deal with your council.

lesley33 · 15/11/2011 11:11

I think the issue is more that in lots of places there aren't the properties for people to move into smaller flats/houses. Both where my parents and where I live have very very few 1 bedroom flats and actually very few 2 bedroom places. Most places are houses with 3 bedrooms. There aren't actually enough properties for all those who only "need" 1 or 2 bedrooms.

ime it is cities with blocks of flats that have lots of 1 or 2 bedroom places. But outside of London and a few large cities, lots of places don't have these types of properties - or not many of them.

DianaXXX · 15/11/2011 15:14

If my neighbours fire and smoking does not constitute health and safety than I don't know what does than

DianaXXX · 15/11/2011 15:17

Also many of my neighbours have contacted the council regarding the mentally caped neighbour because he seemly can't do things for himself we all help him with his day to day life, he simply don't have the mental capacity to leave on his own without constant support

dawntigga · 15/11/2011 15:23

no, I know there is a housing shortage but, if people know there is an expectation of being moved from their homes it decreases the care and investment in the community. It's why social housing has failed on countless sites.


tweedysue · 12/10/2017 17:09

The only people who are allowed to buy a council house are the tenants. If you are not the tenant and are caught buying it you are breaking the law which can result in a jail sentence. The council will always take the house back and the tenant will become homeless and never able to go into social housing again. Be very careful as there are no circumstances which the council re consider. You can lose a lot of money and credibility

Hillingdon · 12/10/2017 17:18

Diana - how old are you?

Redglitter · 12/10/2017 17:22

You do realise this thread is SIX YEARS OLD Hmm

x2boys · 12/10/2017 17:25

Well however old Diana was she will be six years old now as this thread was started in 2011Hmm

grannytomine · 12/10/2017 17:27

If someone has benefitted from social housing to raise their children it seems means to want to keep the house when young families are homeless. Lots of people sell up and move to smaller houses, some for financial reasons and some because they don't want to be looking after a bigger house than they need. We bought our house off a retired couple. There is a bathroom, ensuite and downstairs loo. The lady said she decided to move when she realised she was cleaning 3 loos for 2 people.

grannytomine · 12/10/2017 17:28

Oh no, should check dates!!!!!!!!!!!

cook64 · 12/10/2017 17:31

problem is where are these smaller houses

Iwanttobe8stoneagain · 12/10/2017 17:34

We have very little social housing stock and I think we have reached a stage where we have to see them as safety nets. I think new tenancies are reviewed unless I'm very much mistaken so pressumably now you would have that option. Moving a really old person is not really practical or beneficial. But I would say anyone under 60 (unless they have health issues which necessitates staying should be moved to a smaller property if the don't need the rooms).

LakieLady · 12/10/2017 18:12

Despite working with people in housing need I would defend to the death my MIL's right to remain in the 2-bed council house she has lived in since 1961.

When they moved in, DP was toddler, his brother a baby. She brought up 4 kids (they partitioned the front bedroom to make it into 2 rooms when his sisters were born) in that house, and now it's enjoyed by her great-grandchildren. She has spent almost all her adult life there.

More pertinently, 50+ years of hard graft has turned the garden from a heap of rubble and weeds into an absolute delight. It is a riot of colour and fragrance from spring to autumn, with wonderful roses, delphiniums, clematis, shrub salvias, cosmos, nigella, escholzia and penstemons. It looks like something off a cottage garden seed packet and you'd never dream it was the garden of a 50's built council house. It's a haven for birds and she has foxes visiting that are so used to her that the cubs will play round her feet while she has a cuppa on one of the benches. It would break her heart to leave it.

We've already agreed that if the rules changed so that she had to leave, 3 of us would remortgage our homes so that she could buy it and stay there as long as she likes.

And the rent that they've paid over the years would have paid for that house several times over.

Firesuit · 12/10/2017 18:29

Should the solution be that there is enough social housing for everyone in need?

If people require subsidy, they should broadly given the amount they need via housing benefit/LHA. That amount is unlikely to pay for people to live in a housing that exceeds their basic needs.

Who their landlord is should be irrelevant. If charities (housing associations) and local councils want to be landlords, I suppose they can, but they should let their properties at proper market rents, with no criteria as to who can be a tenant other than the kind that any private landlord would take into account.

(Actually, I would ban local authorities from being landlords, or at least specify that no authority can both be a landlord and be in control of planning, as there is a conflict of interest. And I would allow and encourage big companies to become landlords. For example, insurance companies should probably be allowed to invest in residential property provided they are ideal landlords providing long lets.)

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.