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Dave Beans

Social Housing - Your Stories

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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/11575095

The social housing budget in England is to be cut by more than half, the BBC understands.

Council houses "for life" will also end for new tenants, with their entitlement assessed at regular intervals.

People living in social housing and those who rent privately have been sharing their opinions on the changes.

Dave Bayliss, Birmingham

We live in a two-bed council house in Birmingham and have lived in council housing for over 20 years.

I work full-time as a supervisor at a food company and pay £350 a month in rent for our house. I wouldn't mind paying a bit more rent if the service from the council improved.

When we moved into our house there was no central heating and there were nine windows, many of which were rotten. The council replaced two of these but we did the rest at our own expense.

Again, I don't mind doing this in order to have a nice house to live in, but I do think that good tenants like myself and my wife should be rewarded with some security for the fact that we keep up our house in a very good state.

I look around our area and there are people unemployed in the street who don't look after their properties. These are the people that should have secure tenancies taken away from them.

I'm worried about how these changes might affect us. I've worked all my life and brought up two kids. I don't know how I'd manage if we had to rent privately.

Ann Fielding, Brighton

I am a single mother, I work full-time and having a council property means that I now have a stable home, no landlord will ask me to move when they decide they want to sell up or raise the rent.

We were homeless for nearly five months and stability is very important to me.

I do not claim any benefits, I work and I do pay rent and bills on my council house.

I have rented in the private sector but the rents are so high in comparison to my wage that I found I only had about £40 per week to spare, which just wasn't enough to keep me and my son.

As to the "council housing for life," well why not? I will never be able to buy a house to pass down to my son. Why can't I have this option if he needs it when I am gone?

He will of course pay the rent and bills which means he will also not need to ask for government handouts.

If he is doing well for himself then the house can go back to the local government and someone else can hopefully benefit from the house like I did.

Alice McDevitt, London

I live in an area which is a mix of social and private housing.

As a low-income charity worker I struggle to pay my private rent in London, and I find it upsetting to see people in my area following their chosen careers whilst they are being supported by the low rent of social housing.

I realise that many of the people in my area may not be on a high income, but neither am I.

I made the decision about which job to do and I don't expect the government to support my lifestyle. It makes me disappointed when I see other people being subsidised.

Houses shouldn't be automatically passed on to family members. They should be given to those who really need it. The disabled, elderly people, families with young children.

Of course I understand that secure tenancy is nice for people, but in this day and age, no-one even has a job for life.

A five-year review process for council housing sounds perfectly fair to me.

Norman Osland, Hertfordshire

I think this system works perfectly well as it is”

Norman Osland

My partner and I live in Hertfordshire in a housing association house.

We both work and therefore we pay rent, but renting in the private sector would cost at least £200 a month more and we simply cannot afford it.

There is no question of us getting a mortgage as we are both in our 40s.

With private renting there is also no guarantee that you will be able to stay in your property. There is no security.

This is going to be bad news for the younger generation needing social housing.

I do agree that housing rights shouldn't be passed onto children, but otherwise I think this system works perfectly well as it is.

The changes being proposed by the government will force a lot of people into expensive private housing. If people then become unemployed, this will simply cost the state more money.

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I have been living in housing association properties for 15 years and in this time I have put a large amount of effort into my own housing and volunteering for the organisation.

We are about to complete a renovation as part of our self build scheme which will bring four flats back into use.

I cannot believe my HA will be forced to raise the rent (which is against their charter) which would mean we could not afford it unless we get HB. It will be very difficult to get a job even in London that will allow us to pay the extremely distorted market rent.

You will not see 'scroungers' in my majority HA and council housing area, the majority work in low paid but essential jobs from bin men to charities. we have a higher proportion of those who volunteer for work in the community. In fact we have kids who can play football in the street until late without worry.

Moving out to the suburbs is not an option owing to the ever rising cost of the commute. This area has been my home for all those years.

Raising social rents to market levels is obscene, and will either decimate this area leaving it empty, or force those in work onto HB.

The thinking on this is schizophrenic. Housing costs are too high, so let's raise the lower rents? I am horrified that a social good might be irreversibly destroyed, in part due to the media exploding minority p!ss taking situations into a full blown crisis.

The crisis is housing cost being too high, BTL incentives, and total lack of regulation in the rental market.

The problem IS NOT SOCIAL HOUSING.

So I now need to earn £60K a year to keep us in social housing? Yet I won't qualify because I managed to earn £60K a year?

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I have been living in housing association properties for 15 years and in this time I have put a large amount of effort into my own housing and volunteering for the organisation.

So I now need to earn £60K a year to keep us in social housing? Yet I won't qualify because I managed to earn £60K a year?

You are dealing with people who hate with a passion anybody getting anything they don't get themselves.

Forget the taxes we are raped for, those should go to fund the truly worthy, oh and the genius gamblers 'working' in the

City.

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You are dealing with people who hate with a passion anybody getting anything they don't get themselves.

Forget the taxes we are raped for, those should go to fund the truly worthy, oh and the genius gamblers 'working' in the

City.

When I first got taken on by my HA I was in genuine need, homeless, no hope of building up a deposit, and nowhere to go (raised in foster care). It was hard enough being a single white person of working age and my HA was specific in helping this sector.

It was not easy and it was not comfortable and I spent years in some horrible house shares.

This low rent however allowed me to work and build a career, and while this has gone bad for the moment, when I get back in I do expect it at an average and low wage. It is not because I am not bright or hard working, but I am job hunting and have to be realistic in this market.

This one misguided policy could see me on the sh!theap, permanently.

Edited by Tonkers

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The thinking on this is schizophrenic. Housing costs are too high, so let's raise the lower rents? I am horrified that a social good might be irreversibly destroyed, in part due to the media exploding minority p!ss taking situations into a full blown crisis.

The crisis is housing cost being too high, BTL incentives, and total lack of regulation in the rental market.

The problem IS NOT SOCIAL HOUSING.

So I now need to earn £60K a year to keep us in social housing? Yet I won't qualify because I managed to earn £60K a year?

We did this one into the early hours a good many times, fortunately with a good deal of humour thrown in. If you are paying less than RIGGED market prices this is obviously unfair so rents must be brought up to RIGGED market levels....so they say.

Anyway, good post Tonkers...

Edited by council dweller

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If the government is providing some people (but not everybody) with low cost housing, those people:

1. Have more disposable cash to spend in the shops, driving up the price of goods for people who pay market rents

2. Can accept a lower wage to sustain the same lifestyle, pushing down wages for the people who pay market rents

3. Are able to save more, pushing down interest rates for the people who pay market rents

No such thing as a free lunch. Whenever somebody is getting taxed or subsidised, this creates market distortions which change prices elsewhere and harm others. 20% of the population having preferential access to something we all own (state land) is a pretty big distortion.

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If the government is providing some people (but not everybody) with low cost housing, those people:

1. Have more disposable cash to spend in the shops, driving up the price of goods for people who pay market rents

2. Can accept a lower wage to sustain the same lifestyle, pushing down wages for the people who pay market rents

3. Are able to save more, pushing down interest rates for the people who pay market rents

It's amazing what social tenants can do with an extra 3k a year for council tenants and around 1k to 1.5% extra for HA tenants! Do we really have so much power to distort the market so much with so little!? Can we really save, spend, and not earn......all at the same time? Maybe we should form the next government?

1. The government targets a 2% inflation and can increase or decrease money supply and interest rate accordingly.

2. You could also say that tenants don't need to work and so push up wage for those that do. Plus add minus equal zero.

3. Go to 1.

I say again, social tenants are fab!

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Elderly in-laws grew up in nice 3 bedroom council houses, then moved into another council house when first married, not buying themselves until they had saved up a big deposit.

They then purchased their mother's council house under the right to buy scheme and sold it for 4x what they paid for it.

They now regularly rant about "council estate types" and how they managed without any help and how "we never got any handouts"

I just roll my eyes, there is no point debating it.

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Elderly in-laws grew up in nice 3 bedroom council houses, then moved into another council house when first married, not buying themselves until they had saved up a big deposit.

They then purchased their mother's council house under the right to buy scheme and sold it for 4x what they paid for it.

They now regularly rant about "council estate types" and how they managed without any help and how "we never got any handouts"

I just roll my eyes, there is no point debating it.

Some here on this thread with the same world view as the in-laws. Cant see how council housing and government requirements for social housing and housing associations etc, are paid for by the hard work of others.

That is the main problem, like the BT judgement on Pensions. Even judges cant see that taxpayer funded schemes such as this are paid for by the hardwork of others, most of whom are denied access to this state largesse.

There are very few state schemes which are not about robbing from the many to elevate the few.

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  • 238 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



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