Fergus Wilson Panorama documentary – now available on iPlayer22:10 PM, 18th March 2019
About 2 days ago 92
There is an article in I News yesterday titled “This single mother works full-time, but still needs housing benefit – so landlords refuse to rent to her”: click here to view.
The story is obviously about how difficult it was for a working mum to find a new home to rent after she was served a section 21 notice from her existing landlord.
However, the real juxtaposition to why benefits tenants have difficulty in finding landlords willing to take them on is shown in the advice it was reported the council gave the tenant before she moved out of her existing home:
“They told me to stay put. That if I moved out of the flat I was in it would be seen as me making myself voluntarily homeless and I wouldn’t be entitled to council housing. I explained that I had an eviction notice, but they said to wait until the landlord called the baliffs in. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.”
The tenant, Limarra, subsequently ignored warning notices and contined to look for a new rental home without success or help from the council. This stress ended up seriously affecting her health. The council did later offer temporary accomodation only after the landlord obtained a possession order.
Limarra said: “They’d told me they would be able to find me temporary accommodation but the only two places available were a flat in Essex and another in Croydon, Surrey. If I didn’t accept one I would be taken off the housing list and be out on the street, so I said yes to the one in Croydon. There was no way I could travel from Essex to work each day and Nevaeh wouldn’t have been able to get to school.”
Limarra had to accept the property which had a cooker next to the bed and her daughter had to live with her grandmother.
Surely it must be obvious that Local Authorities refusal in most cases to work with landlords and often against them is a major factor in the difficulties and stress faced by benefit tenants?
Also see our recent readers question “Terrible time with council tenant and shock at how law treats landlords” Click Here
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