I feel better, having expressed my feelings towards the man… much better than doing nothing…
Adenoids, I can think of elsewhere I would like to see removed.
Being negative gets you nowhere.
Our home is France was always the holiday home, until we moved here in 2010. We kept the family home but last year, at a good time in the market, I sold our large empty nest and bought cosy two bed apartment in the centre of town. The difference for people being forced to downsizing social housing is they don’t have a chunk of equity to cushion the move. As Vanessa says, all their sunk cost is, well, sunk.
Nevertheless I signed and gave them a fiver. The more stuff floating around the ether declaring IDS is a shit the better I’ll also blast off the link to may pals.
Presumably the rent would be less on a smaller place.
Fundamentally it come down to the view of whether being in a local authority house is seen as being in a rented house or a lifetime home.
I don’t see why ‘rented house’ should necessarily be antithetical to ‘lifetime home’, plenty of people are life-long renters for all sorts of reasons, and not just because they can’t afford to buy.
I rather think that when I die it might actually be more convenient for my children if I were to rent, and that I ought perhaps to sell my house.
That reminds me of an old story once told of twin sisters - one who married well and had all the trappings of a luxurious life - fancy foreign holidays and the like and the other who fell on harder times and had no savings to speak of but lived her life in rented accommodation quite cheerfully.
Came the day and both fell into ill health. The one with “everything” ended up with nothing when having to sell her home and other trappings of wealth to pay for her meagre care whereas the other found relative comfort in social care courtesy of the community.
Who won in the end?
I think it would have influence on the decision of whether you wish to substantially invest in the house - something which you would likely to be prevented from doing in private rented or not wish to.
@Mat_Davies that is the whole point, I can quite see someone not wishing to invest substantially in any house and preferring to rent their ‘lifetime home’ and remain relatively carefree.
We agree on this, my comment was in relation to someone not wanting to move to a smaller rented house as they may have invested in their existing rented house.
@Mat_Davies oh I see now, I got the wrong end of the stick, sorry! I know plenty of people who see owning property as a bind, and prefer to invest in other things.
Oh and I suppose those who own their homes don’t actually accommodate people in them? What a crass comment . They may be rented but they are people’s HOMES (capitals for emphasis not shouting). A fact that seems to be lost on you. Perhaps you’d like to see my parents in law “encouraged “ out of their social housing?
My father in law was a school caretaker all his life . When he retired at 65 the house they lived in went with the job so the council re housed them in a very tiny bungalow . In theory it is two bedroomed although the second bedroom is so small it would barely fit a bed in it . In your world they should be “encouraged “ to give it up to someone else .
If you really think someone of 88 with cancer should give up their home to fulfil a corrupt government directive then there really is no hope for the U.K. Empathy & compassion have clearly left it . Clearly in your world there is one rule for the rich one for the rest of us . We’re dregs who don’t deserve to ever call our house our home.
BTW. That family I mentioned was mine. I was made homeless . I could never buy another house as I’d been repossessed. I didn’t get there by choice, I fought tooth and nail to stay in the house I’d bought and paid a mortgage on for 18 years but it was absolutely impossible to reason with the mortgage company and even the judge at court told me to give up as it was an impossible task. I was blacklisted from borrowing again and even if I hadn’t been I didn’t earn enough to meet the borrowing criteria . We still didn’t meet the criteria even when I remarried .
To fill in the blanks . My ex husband left me after 17 years with a house in negative equity which , in case you weren’t aware , it is illegal to sell. He also left me a pile of debt from unpaid bills and evaded paying maintenance despite my persistence via the CSA (or CMS as it’s now known ) for almost 30 years .
When my children and I were rehoused as homeless we had no choice where we went . The house we were rehoused in was literally a damp ridden hovel. Storage heaters, metal windows, holes in the floor and doors that let in a gale, it was freezing cold in winter and stank of urine from the previous occupant - an elderly incontinent lady. My dad was so incensed by the state of it , he, despite being a mild mannered man , complained to the council (who owned it at the time ) that it was virtually uninhabitable . The roof leaked into my daughter’s room and there was black furry mould 4” thick under the sink. I won’t bore you with the rest of the state of it . Suffice to say that at the time I was just grateful we had a roof above our heads after the trauma of the preceding years . It took me years and years of hard work to turn it into a home . Years during which I paid more in rent than what it would have cost to build a new house . That’s where the fault lies. Not in allowing people to remain in the house they’ve made a home but in not reinvesting the money people have paid in rent or those who’ve bought their council /housing association house into building new homes or refurbishing empty ones.
The number of empty homes across England has risen for the second consecutive year to more than 216,000, the highest level since 2012, according to official figures. That’s where the fault lies .
To complete my story . You may be wondering how I am able to live in France. Well my dad died. After selling his house and dividing his estate there was just enough to buy a small house here with enough to tide us over until the U.K. government sees fit to pay me the pension I worked for for 41 years, 6 years later than it should’ve been paid .
Oh and by the way , that council house you think I should’ve given up . In the last few years before my dad died he gave us some money to help us out . We spent over £8000 having new flooring, new doors and redecorating .
It was not “just a rented house” it was a home. A home I raised my children in single handed whilst working full time . A home I paid the rent and bills on from one salary whilst raising those children to adulthood . One is now a Corporal in the armed forces, soon to be a Sergeant. The other is so disillusioned with the state of the U.K. , it’s politics and it’s self centred people she’s using her skills , talent & her 1st Class Honours degree to find a job elsewhere in the world and may never return .
The house itself ? It stood vacant for more than 3 months after we left despite my having given the Housing Association 6 weeks notice that we were vacating it. In that time they tore out all the new flooring and put in a new kitchen and bathroom despite there being nothing wrong with the existing ones.
We remain good friends with our ex neighbours who helped us move our contents here which is how I know this. They have had to complain to the Housing Association about the new tenants due to their use of cannabis in our old house, the smell of which permeates through into their children’s room in their house. The new tenants also became violent when my friends tried to politely ask them not to smoke cannabis in the house and have had to call the police on more than one occasion. The new tenants are now under warning of eviction .
So the house that was our home for more than26 years is now in use by a couple of drug using benefit scroungers who’s two children have to be fed breakfast by the local school teachers as they arrive malnourished and ill clothed . Perhaps you’d rather it stayed occupied by people like them than by the decent family who looked after it, worked hard and called it home .
I know what I think .
@Essexness. - we agree on far more than you realise.
It is very poor that the house you were allocated was in such a poor state, you should not have to make a council house habitable - this is the job of the council.
Regarding the new tenants that had the house after you they too have a responsibility towards looking after the house and getting on with the neighbours.
I do think it makes sense however for there to be a periodic review of people’s needs of a house to get as many people housed as possible. The frequency of the periodic review perhaps 5 yearly and perhaps have 2 years to make a move if required.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Vanessa. For me it was eerily similar to a story I heard only yesterday - we had an apero with some friends and for the first time I talked with the mother of one of my daughter’s friends - you know how you pass the time of day with other parents but never really know their backstory. Hers was also of a difficult marriage breakup, disappeared ex, and negative equity, leading in her case to personal bankruptcy, still unresolved - a reminder that for any of us it only takes a couple of big things to go very wrong at once to put us in desperate circumstances.
A very difficult story Vanessa and I admire your fortitude and strength. I doubt that I would have had level of courage and determination that you needed to overcome all those challenges.
For me your story just reenforces my dislike of bankers, they work hard to oversell you debt and screw you if you trip up, and the waste and misery the public sector creates driven by venal creature like IDS and Theresa May.
Not in Burgundy either.
Couldn’t agree more, it’s shameful. It’s a complete insult to anyone ruined, desperate and trapped in the “benefits” system that this awful, cruel and prejudiced man helped design and implement. His utter lack of empathy is even more sickening when you know that this man married into a wealthy family, living the very comfortable life of a multi, multi millionaire, and yet still had the audacity to pay his wife more than £50,000 a year for “managing his diary”! He only stopped because he got caught. I wish he’d choked on that bogey he fished out of his nose and ate, live of parliament TV…
I signed it too…there is a perception that petitions don’t achieve much but it’s a way to make our feelings known…
The petition that saddens/irritates me most is the one to revoke article 50…over 6 million people signed within the first few days crashing the website numerous times and had it been allowed to run for a few more weeks I feel it would have reflected the country’s wish to remain…