#NaBloPoMo / policies / Temporary Housing / Uncategorized

#NaBloPoMo – the little things – Day 27

Day 27

I’ve tried to keep these posts cheerful to show how grateful we are, how thankful we are for this home. And we truly are. But there are after effects of what we have been through recently.

The major one is money. Or debt really. This has wiped me out financially. I have had hundreds of pounds in court costs – luckily we are allowed to pay it off weekly but it’s hanging there as an extra bill for quite a while now. There was the cost of the storage and removal van. I have had increased living costs which made it impossible to save for this stage. Food and travel being the two big changes to our budget.

But worst of all has been walking into an empty home and having to refurnish it from scratch.

We had a home. We had everything we needed but we had to give it all up. We were repeatedly told B&B was our only option. We couldn’t afford to store it all so it had to go. This is what makes me so cross really. They knew for long enough that we weren’t making ourselves intentionally homeless. They could have skipped the emergency housing and the threat of B&B. They could have moved us directly here where we could have brought our stuff with us.

Instead, we had to rely on the kindness of a charity to provide us with beds. On family hand downs for a sofa. I have spent what little saving I’d had on a washing machine because when you added the bus fare and the cost of the laundrette it was just silly to throw money away like that.

We are happy and we are thankful I promise. But I’m fed up of having no drawers for the kids clothes and no table to eat at or for my daughter to do homework on. I’m frustrated at the lack of bookshelves or toy storage too. Silly little pieces of furniture that you take for granted. Things that I had but couldn’t bring.

Starting over in a new home is no fun when you have no money!

OK. Rant over. I shall post about fluffy happy things tomorrow.

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6 thoughts on “#NaBloPoMo – the little things – Day 27

  1. Appreciate how tough it is but confused whose responsibility you think it is? The struggling taxpayer, with a family, has to find it all from somewhere plus is expected to fund other families who either do not work, fathers walk away, families do not support etc. There should not be an automatic sense of entitlement, to be supported by others. Sorry but reading your blogs makes me a tad angry, especially when you prioritise going into further education rather than get a job to support yourself & children. Life is tough for all of us.

    • Firstly, I accept it is my responsibility to find my own housing. I tried – honestly I did but landlords just didn’t want to know because I was in receipt of Housing Benefits (most claimants are working by the way – it’s a common misconception that housing benefit = benefit scrounger…) So what would you have suggested I did? Went to live under a bridge in a box with my children? With no private housing open to me, Social housing was my only option.

      Secondly, It might help if I explain the ‘prioritising further education’ thing. No job that is open to me currently would offer enough in earnings to make me financially independent. Especially in Private housing. I would still need Benefit assistance regardless of my hours. By going to University I am trying to make sure that in the near future I am not going to need that assistance. And actually, when I am at University I will be getting less of the tax payers money technically. I would be living on a student loan for the most part. Which would be paid back out of my salary.

      My blog is about the journey we have faced. I have said time and again I am thankful for the help. But it doesn’t stop it being difficult for us. If I could have solved this myself I would have trust me I would have loved to avoid all of this upset for my children.

      The policy for dealing with homeless people is what I am most cross about. Not because I want to wander into the office and get handed a house, but because it has reduced us to numbers on a list. It doesn’t work and actually costs the tax payer stupid amounts of money that could have been avoided as I’ve said in previous posts.

      I’m sorry if I’ve come across as entitled. If you knew me in real life you’d know I’m not. And you’d know that the stigma attached to my situation upsets me a great deal. Mainly because it’s unfounded and based on misinformation or cruel assumptions. With respect, you don’t know my employment situation. Yet you assumed I’m sat here rubbing my hands with glee at the thought of all the money I can wrench from you. And there in lies part of the problem. People like you and some private landlords assume Housing benefit = scum. Which makes it hard for people to get Private housing and forces them to turn to the council. Which just confirms in your eyes that they were out for all they could get for nothing.

      But you were correct on one thing. Life is tough for all of us. It’s just a shame that we have to make it harder by creating a ‘them’ and ‘us’ mentality isn’t it?

      • I have been a single mum bringing up two children, living in a council house and it is not my intention to stigmatise you. I do not visualise you rubbing your hand together with glee because I know that you will still be struggling. “People like me” appreciate that with low wages and high Housing costs, top up benefits are needed to bridge the gap. I would have loved to have gone to Uni but my status meant that I had to go out to work to feed us and keep a roof over our heads. I also had very strong views on the example that I needed to set my daughters – that you had to work hard to get what you wanted in life – and if you want it enough – the world is your oyster.

        Here is the irony, having worked hard, done jobs that I have hated I have been very successfulI. I am now a Landlady! So “Them” and “Us” are the same person.

        I have had some brilliant tenants that were on Housing Benefit and I have always accepted children, pets,the whole kaleidoscope.

        At the moment I am not taking tenants on benefits, as I feel that I also need to make a point about the “Not fit for purpose” Housing System that we now have.

        I am very angry that New Build, Social, Rented Housing in the County that I live has not been allocated to the families that are on low incomes that are desperate for Low Cost Social Housing, languishing on the Housing Register. In several instances they have been allocated to families with multi incomes who were affording private rents of double their Social rent. In one instance to a Council Housing Manager. To add insult to injury said Housing Manager only had a 2 bedroom need but was allocated 3 bed. You could not make it up! And yes, I have screamed and shouted, contacted Councillors, waste of time. I do not see why low income families should be pushed into the private sector, whilst social housing is going to better off families.I believe this is called Localism.

        Like it or not this Government is privatising Social Housing which is scandalous.

        Anyway I digress. I have enjoyed your blog. I do have the experiences to empathise but I also know that a certain mindset can hold you back from reaching your potential and it also effects the mindset of those around you, including children. Just wanted to put another side to things. No offence intended.

        Can I also take chance to point out that many Landlords will in fact take benefits if you can give them a Guarantor.

        Sincere best wishes. Blog On!!!

      • I hope my children will see me working hard to balance University and home life in an effort to provide for them in the long run. The example I’d like to set them is that it’s never too late to change your path. I’d hope that wouldn’t been seen as an entitled attitude. My mindset isn’t one of sit back and do nothing. Obviously I need to work at conveying that a bit better.

        I think we’re firmly on the same page when it comes to Housing policy and the system. Keep shouting about why you’re unwilling to accept Housing benefit claimers. Someday you might be heard.

  2. i dont think you should have to explain yourself! You work hard and going to uni now makes complete sense! The whole system is messed up, I am fine with the tax we pay going towards people who actually need help. None of this was your fault! x x x

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