One end of the Galaxy
I want to challenge the status quo, to make you think about your views and cahllenge your beliefs, in a good way.
Mr Webb, Gensis do build Social Rent, as do all social landlords, they also build affordable rent, shared ownership and open market housing.
They use the open market housing to cross subsidise the affordable part of their business, both sales and letting. Genesis aren't charging above market rents, they're charging market rates for market properties.
Why is that such an evil thing?
So they're engaged in open market letting and sales, actually it is a far fairer way of funding affordable housing, than grant funding.
I don't need to demonise them, they do a good enough job of that on their own!
Besides I was referring to the comment made by Trevor Galley.
Can I just point out that this has nothing to do with affordable housing and the lack thereof. The travelling community prefer to live in caravans (hence the name TRAVELLER).
So basically the story here is that we more travellers than ever. Perhaps something needs to be looked into in this, why are the travellers of Europe intent on coming to the UK? Indeed why do so many immigrants want to come to the UK full stop.
Benefits entitlements are one part of the issue, however, the bigger issue is that we seem to have, inadvertently, created the British Dream.
Unlike the American dream of hard work and good rewards, the British Dream is come here and we'll give you a job, don't worry should it all not work out for you, there's free money, healthcare and housing on tap.
That may sound noble, but you have to question why we are importing workers when we have enough unemployed and underemployed citizens and existing immigrants. Surely the government should be focusing on putting the people that are here to work first, importing only those skills we simply do not have and cannot learn, before we start importing all and sundry.
The unwillingness of some to do menial work, to work for basic pay doing jobs they regard as demeaning in the problem. The solution is not find someone, anyone, to do those jobs, but to make those already here do them, if that means we have to cut benefits to make life on the dole uncomfortable, then so be it.
Don't get me wrong, if you genuinely can't work, whether permanently or temporarily, then the state should be there to support you. But the instant you can work again, every waking moment should be spent looking for jobs, going on interviews and taking what you can get. Not rejecting the menial jobs because you have dreams of being a heart surgeon or the next David Beckham. For the overwhelming majority of people, your future does not lie through X-Factor, you need to pick up a brush, occassionally, and sweep the streets.
It is scandelous that anyone has to pay for basic health care, regardless of capital assets.
The State should guarantee a minimum standard of care FOC. If you want better care then it's up to you to pay for it.
I know this means that billionaires could still get free healthcare if they wanted, but me thinks those with money would rather pay something to ensure they're kept in the life they've been accustomed to.
Gladly Mr Webb
The first 4 all come down this samepoint, it goes to implementation not the central idea. The central idea being that people shouldn't receive free money to pay for rooms they do not need when they could live in a smaller property. The implementation is wrong because it ignores the last bit, the availablity of smaller property and casts everyone as being scroungers (I know it's an effort to create equality in implementation and also that the policy is being implemented simply to cut costs, but it doesn't stop it being wrogn). So I say again, the policy is fine, it's the implementation of that policy that is wrong.
Again on your 5th point you end up pointing to implementation. I see nothing wrong with expecting people, in long-term receipt of HB to move to a smaller property when they no longer need the larger property. Remember that a social home is the resource of the landlord, not the home of the tenant, that's what renting is about. The landlord needs to deploy it's resources most effectively to help the many, not pander the whims of the individual. Elsewhere you've argued for more social renting, but this would be the upshot of that. I would suggest that if more social renting comes in, there needs to be a critical re-understanding of how the social rent sector works, are people getting homes or are they getting a right to occupy a property for so long as they need it. Fundamentally, at the moment, it is the latter.
Your sixth point is quite a good one. If there are insufficient families to occupy 3 and 4 bedroom homes, then landlords probably need to shed these to the open market, using the sales revenue to build more smaller homes that people need. Callous, but it goes back to the point above, is it a home or a right to occupy.
Your seventh point goes back to my central argument, it's the implementation thats wrong not the policy. It's implementation that cares not a jot about availability and assumes everyone in receipt of HB is a scrounger. The policy does not, the policy merely is that people shouldn't receive benefits for properties that are too big for what they need.
I'm not going to respond to you're last points, it's not really an argument, just an opinion, I happen to think the POLICY is the exact opposite.
The policy is designed and implemented to be used in a system where social tenants have a right to occupy not the right to a home. It seems the majority of the industry thinks it should be the other way.
Finally, you're right we do need a new democracy, and I feel that matters have now gotten so bad that the only way to achieve that is through revolution. Party Politics is too samey, the fringe parties are either demented (Monster Raving Looneys - the clue is in the name!), one trick ponies or extremist in nature. The gap between rich (by rich I don't mean the genuine aristocracy who are still generally quite grounded, I mean the upper middle classes, the mega rich bosses of multinationals) and poor (pretty much everyone else) has never been wider and is not likely to contract. We need a revolution, not a socialist one (we've seen how well socialism work in the now 'teetering on the edge of bankruptcy' France), but one which does put the needs of the many above the needs of the few. Federalisation for me seems like the best solution, but a Federal Monarchy (I don't see the US system working any better with an elected head of state, and there is something to be said to having a none political 'elder character' at the top of the state to advise the politcians but having no real constitutional power.
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Posted in: Panorama on subletting
I'd agree with that, we need to be focusing on the supply of which there is a distinct lack. I've seen a few programmes recently about how we built more social housing in the 60s and 70s (albeit vastly inferior accommodation) but that seemed to dry up.
Now I know everyone likes to point to Thatcher for the RTB, but the truth is more complex than that I feel.
As for sub-letting, you'll find anonymous that most HA's have a policy on sub-letting (albeit usually unpublished) where they will let people in those circumstances sub-let, but not for a profit. It would be unworkable to have a tenancy that allowed subletting for certain reasons, as those reasons whould have be exhaustive, which would then lead to problems in the future. The very notion of needing to be able to sub let was unthinkable 20-30 years ago, times change.
Posted in: Panorama on subletting
PSR, going back to your first post, can I point out the flaw in your logic, the social home is not an asset of the police officer, it is merely an expense, he can't sell it, he can't realise it, therefore it cannot be an asset.
Sub-letting expenses, well you'll have to talk to MP's and bankers about how that turns out!
Personally, no social tenant should be allowed to sub-let except in extreme circumstances (such as being required to work away from home for a period of time - but not permanently). Those that do should have their tenancies terminated summarily and be forced to handover any profit they've made on renting it out.
Ben Perl, I think you've been advised wrongly, RTM doesn't extend to RSLs, and so whilst your solicitor is correct that your status as a shared owner won't affect anything, they are wrong that you can claim RTM against an RSL. RSL's are exempt from the legislation for some very good reasons.
Martin, you're problem is easily solved, stop paying your service charge, if you are correct and they are not maintaining the building then you shouldn't pay for a service you are not receiving.
You may also like to consider the possibility of taking them to the LVT, but that may prove costly.
I'm fairly certain the Ombudsman is wrong, it is his jurisdiction to hear complaints about an RSL, regardless of whether you are a shared owner. However, you will have to take the complaints process seriously, that means going through every level of complaint within the RSL and then taking it to the ombudsman. Most RSLs have a defined complaints procedure and, whilst some are slow to respond, they do have to respond and you can report them to the TSA if they don't respond.
You could raise the problem with the TSA, and with the local authority, both of whom would generally be interested to here about this.
Finally, and whilst you've already started this, it is in IH and not the populist media, you should consider highlighting the problem to the local media, and perhaps even the national media if they will listen. Your local paper and probably local news station may well take the story on. RSL's don't like bad publicity.
Hope some of this helps, but I will check back if you want to post further.