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Immigration And Rents

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A friend told me today that some family friends from NZ are staying with them for a few weeks as they get ready to return home. The high cost of housing is the chief reason for them going.

The guy is a graduate working as a middle manager of a company in the SE. Their rent has risen by £400 pcm over the past 7 years - the LL refused to budge. They did not move out because rents all over the SE have risen in a similar way so they have been unable to find anywhere else big enough for a small family that they can afford.

They earn too much to qualify for tax credits or HB.

I also know a family from the US (she is a nurse and he is an IT manager) who are considering leaving for the same reasons.

It seems the qualified, skilled and higher paid migrant workers who pay taxes are giving up and leaving, while millions of poor immigrants face no such challenges - rent paid by HB and any low paid work topped up with TCs - that's if they choose to work at all. As life is so much easier for them here than back home, these people are staying put and inviting all their friends and relatives to join them.

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Most council housing round by my parents is being given to immigrants. Seems crazy that low paid natives on zero hour contracts are expected to pay market rents while immigrants are given priority for what little social housing is left.

Some even push it to extremes. A Somali couple moved into one of the local council houses, the largest on the street. Wife had 5 kids to maximise tax credits, husband a taxi driver (cash in hand tax dodger). A year or two later they pretend to split up, she moves out and gets given a new council house while he keeps the existing one. The husband disappears (moves into his wife's new council house) and he sublets the first house to 7+ of his somali taxi driver mates. Neighbours complain. Council say nothing they can do as he has all the correct documents, whatever that means. Neighbours continue to complain, taxi drivers coming and going all hours of the day and night. So the husband buy the house in cash at the full discount and pays less than half the houses value. I assume there's nothing to stop him doing the same scheme with the second council house, and a third and so on. This country is a big joke.

I rent privately, in less than two years all the similar flats to mine locally have increased by £200+ p/m. This isn't London but a second tier city in a rougher part of town. My landlord hasn't increased my rent, yet. I'm planning on living in a van by the end of the year either that or running my business down to a point where I could get HB. Seems absolutely pointless working my ass off just to give 50%+ of it in rent while everyone else rinses the system.

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I am amazed just how many people seem to be prepared to slave away just to hand over the fruits of their labour to the land owning classes...without so much as a complaint. So long as folk are so docile this will continue and get worse.

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It's where to go to that it the problem and has been for years. I've got family and friends in NZ and Australia.

NZ in particular has lost a lot of white collar jobs as companies moved to Australia. Australia doesn't like outsiders very much and anyone foreign is the first to be made redundant. I've seen UK people return to the UK or move from Australia to NZ trying to find work again.

A NZ friend who left London because they could not afford to buy took 8 months to find a job back in NZ and has now had to move to another city to find more work once that finished.

Auckland and the major Australian cities have had high house prices rises and in some cases a glut of new builds.

It's easier to consider immigration if it is a needed skill like medicine but less so if in other occupations.

BTW when I was living in London my rent didn't go up at all for 5 years. I don't see rents haven risen particularly in any of the areas I normally look at. It's the price to buy that is the problem there. Obviously it is different where your friend was renting in the SE and we are looking at flats not family houses.

I think the problems we are seeing in the SE of England are also in NZ and Australia. There isn't any easy solution.

Edited by Flopsy

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Correct that the cost of rents and housing is as made in Auckland/Sydney/Melbourne/Brissie as SE UK - but Australia/NZ has other cities where the cost of living is doable - if you are willing to be flexible on working.

And I never encountered any real anti-brit bias in Oz. Saw it against colonial types, sure, but that was more against people being an **** than anything else. I do think - worldwide - a lot of legitimate criticism gets reported as 'racism' - the anti-brit thing reported in Oz is just one example. Never saw a hard working brit get discounted just for being a brit.

In another example of how crazy the UK housing setup is - I got offered a relocation back in the UK recently. Turned it down as even with a 40% pay rise, the combination of tax plus housing costs made it uneconomic for me. Still, I am sure the country just imported another penniless Mipuri instead. Very sensible, Uk government.

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