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New kitchens or bathrooms, only if you are on the list

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Wednesday 17 February 2016 9.33pm
10 years that is at least on waiting list, so your the lucky ones as i didnt even get offered a council home
Wednesday 17 February 2016 10.06pm
Gosh - such vitriol! If you were able to afford to buy then why should you be offered a council property? I'm a bit puzzled by your postings. I suspect I'm not alone.
Thursday 18 February 2016 7.52am
I apologise if my postings dont make sense to you all

When I git married 30 years ago - we went on the council waiting list - we were told that it would be at least 10 years before we may be offered anything unless our cicrcumstances changed, we lived with my wifes parents for 3 years untill we found Crystal Palace housing where you get a home by buying 50 % and renting the other 50 % from them, as we were both working at the time, we could just about afford to do this, yet had very little money left at the end of each month, i was then very lucky and got some promotions at work, which meant we could move to a home where we could own all of it, i do feel sorry for people who are on low salaries and can only rent. yet there are many drawbacks to owning a flat as you have to pay service charge [ mine is 140 per month ] then if you have major repair works - you pay for that also - just had to pay 5k for the windows

Anyway like someone said - maybe we should get back to topic, again i apologise as it was me who started to go off the subject
Thursday 18 February 2016 8.11am
Chelsea we were fortunate to be offered a council property because all the tenements were being demolished. My children didn't have that luxury all had to move out of London to own their own homes. None of them would move back now, so perhaps your retirement plans of a seaside home is not too bad!
Thursday 18 February 2016 8.25am
Thanks Jan, think that is a good idea

Anyway hope that all people in SE1 who need new kitchens etc get them
Thursday 18 February 2016 12.17pm
Zoe wrote:
The Housing Revenue Account is totally self funding, all it's money comes from tenants and leaseholders rents and service charges and it's hardly outrageous that the money is therefore spent on tenants and leaseholders properties.
It's not free, there is just no profit element in council properties so rents are fair.

It's "self funding" in that the maintenance costs are covered by the rents charged, but this ignores the fact that around 65% of council tenants claim some form of housing benefit (which of course comes from the general tax pot), so the rents themselves are funded by taxes.

It also ignores some other pretty huge factors, such as the substantial initial outlay for each new council home from Southwark's Affordable Housing Fund (of which a large portion comes from payments in lieu from development projects - which is the direct subsidy of council properties by private owners).

So while the "everything for free" comment is certainly disingenuous, it's fair to note that for a majority of council tenants they are in fact getting new bathrooms and kitchens that are at least partially paid for by the taxpayer. Not saying that this is necessarily a bad thing so long as this assistance is being provided to those who are genuinely in need, but worth looking honestly at the facts.
Thursday 18 February 2016 1.11pm
There's nothing that you say with which I really disagree, SJAC, but it's worth bearing in mind that housing benefit is also paid to fat-cat private landlords who cost the taxpayer far more. If we're using the housing benefit point then council housing actually represents excellent value for money for the taxpayer.
Thursday 18 February 2016 1.56pm
In some cases that's true Gavin, but not always. Housing benefit is capped and in some cases (especially in areas like SE1) the rents for council or HA accommodation will approach (or hit) the cap just like the private rented accommodation. I'd certainly agree that the lower-cost council housing does provide value for money though.

It's worth noting that in Southwark only 11% of housing benefit claimants live in private rented accommodation - much lower than I would have thought. The London average is 31% and the national average is 32%.
Thursday 18 February 2016 9.06pm
I would have loved to have been able to buy my own house because then its yours and you have complete control and say on what goes on internally and externally, but when you are renting you have very little say in anything, but I could never have afforded to do this within my circumstances. And the money we earn is simply average wages and is not enough to buy a property. These days as well they are at sky high prices.

We put our name down for a council flat some years back because we could not afford to buy, we were both living with our parent back then. I managed to get help from my doctor and the hospital at that time as I had poor health issues as well and they were getting worse. But we waited about 4 years for one offer council flat and it stated in the letter this would be the only offer for the forseable future.

When we first arrived the flat itself was in a state, the boiler was leaking from the pipes and the kitchen cupboards had gone and the flat was basically a state. The council had not bothered to check the safety before letting us in. So we used most of our savings doing it all up. The walls in bathroom have lumps in them. The flat itself is on top of everything, tube, shops etc so its great for that. But the state the council left it in was really bad when we viewed it.

My husband works nights and sleeps in the days so we pay for our own rent, council tax etc,, and yes we do have service charges put on top as well. But last year they had a poor company do internal works "keepmoat" and they did a lot of damage inside our flat and other residents flats as well, and now the council have got the same company back again doing external works, and although residents of over 50 people complained and shouted at meeting about this company yet the council have not listened. So being just a renter of a property does have its downside as well and not everything is as rosey either. As you have no say on what companies they use on your property and remember it may be the councils or private, but we are the ones living in them and paying rents and left with the mess afterwards. And of course the property will never be yours either.

I am sure that lots of people would love to buy a place if they could, but due to different peoples circumstances, they cant always do this.
Thursday 18 February 2016 9.13pm
Hi Sookysoo,

Exactly I totally agree with you, this is the problem, those who were fortunate enough to buy their own property some it seems look down on those who cant afford to and assume we are all scroungers, we could never afford to buy a place either, I would love to buy a house, have my own say on what goes on internally and externally and hire decent builders rather then the shoddy ones the council keeps hiring to mess up our homes. Unfortunately people will always be judgemental.
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