Thursday, 28 August 2014

F451's posts

  • Posted in: Risk management challenges

    F451's post | 16/02/2012 2:11 pm

    I'd have thought the biggest risk as a result of government policy will be the growing body of tenants unable to afford to live in their own homes.

    The second biggest risk as a result of government propaganda will be staff retention as lowering pay and conditions together with the never ending onslaught of negative presentation makes working in the sector undesirable.

    Then, of course there is also the risk of the economy being so weakened by current policy that current borrowing becomes unsustainable.

  • Posted in: housing association

    F451's post | 16/02/2012 10:24 am

    Possibly Mark, it depends on whether the status of the communal area has been changed, or if it never existed. If it never existed you may need to explain why you agreed to pay for it. If it has changed then you have paid for a 'service' you have enjoyed. If it has not changed status but still exists you are benefiting from the landlords waiving the cost. However, if your landlord developed the homes with public funds then they have a duty to collect all costs where reasonable and possible.

    There are so many possibilities I'd say ask a professional legal source.

    Other questions are: was the communal area detailed in the lease; was the communal area detailed in the property details if leasehold. If it is in neither then there is an argument that a charge should not have been levied. If it was described as part of the property but does not exist then that falls under the Properties Misdescription Act (however, one of the early acts of the Tories was to water this Act down so as to no longer disadvantage thier friends in estate agencies).

    Simply as you describe it, I'd want the three year payment back; but as I say, speak to a professional source.

  • Posted in: Building stronger communities

    F451's post | 15/02/2012 5:22 pm

    The Foyer idea is excellent, and East Thames are a great example of how they can be well used.

    What is concerning though is that similarly vulnerable people in our communities are now facing service reductions, income reductions, rent and living cost increases and are now having to suffer the massive stigmatism placed upon them from the political rehetoric of Ministers and the Media.

    The Foyers need to be seen as the way forward, with the theory and practice being applied across the community. Instead, social, welfare, legal, and educational support are being removed from those who need them most.

    Whilst Peter's view is fatalistic it does flash a warning of where we will end up if we just protect our own little silo's, hoping the axe does not fall in our direction, whilst watching our neighbours life be cut to ribbons. We know the Foyer delivers value for money, and over a lifetime is not only self funding but produces profit - but this needs to be understood for across the community in time to save services before they are Toried for ever.

  • Posted in: S21 notice given in advance of any problems

    F451's post | 14/02/2012 12:16 pm

    There is also the protection that if the landlord abused the process the Court would still need to be satisfied there was a breach of tenancy. (the sort of finer point of law that escapes the average Tory Councillor in Wandsworth, for instance)

  • Posted in: S21 notice given in advance of any problems

    F451's post | 14/02/2012 11:00 am

    Think of it as a probationary tenancy.

    Personally I find the practice distasteful but understand it in the context of the directions at court and potential delays when a probationary tenancy does not include a notice and tenants behave in a way that contraveens the additional requirements of their probation. Although I understand that the case law behind this is very slight, and indeed the promotion from probationary to full tenancy is rarely not mandetory. Thus the notice would just expire.

    There needs to be a clearer status of the content of the probationary tenancy within legal consideration, in my opinion.

  • Posted in: Right to buy home

    F451's post | 14/02/2012 10:25 am

    Hi Gloria - go back and speak to the council again. What you are quoting sounds more like their responsibility to existing tenants. They can not 'give' an owner another home. They must purchase your home using the mechanisms that exist, and then you must purchase an alternative or rent privately.

    There is no liklihood of 'extra' money for the new home - you will get a fair price and that is the end of the matter. However, some regenerations are able to offer new homes for sale at minimum profit, thus maximum affordability for you. This is because the sale helps make the whole scheme funding viable, and so enable maximum grant money to be claimed. If this is the case in your regeneration this may mean that you will be able to buy another house, but it will be more expensive than your current home is worth.

    The Council does not have a liability towards you in the same way it does its tenants. You own your home and therefore the responsibility is totally yours. What may or may not be available to you as a result of the regeneration is therefore 'in the gift' of the developer, not a right. That said, they have nothing to gain by failing to treat you fairly and reasonably. So again, do speak to them and if you are unlear about what they are saying perhaps pay the small fee to have a solicitor advise you.

    It sounds as if you urgently need clear and accurate advice on the specific circumstances effecting your home.

  • Posted in: Right to buy home

    F451's post | 13/02/2012 8:46 pm

    Speak directly to the regeneration lead - the council can tell you who this is.

    Ordinarily, if your home is in the way of the regeneration, you will be offered a financial settlement to leave. This actually may prove to be better than what you may achieve through a normal private sale, but do not get confused by 'market value'. If you home is to be demolished then it has little 'market value'.

    You may need to find another home on the open market though.

    Do check because estate regenerations do not always entail complete demolition. For instance, a major regeneration I was involved in left 60% of homes where they were. During the regeneration property values fell by up to a third, however after regeneration property values regained that loss and then added a third. This is not exceptional when you consider that often regeneration removes other blighting factors that may have depressed the price previously.

    In another regeneration, no properties were bought back as the work was to remodel the homes. In such a case the owner occupiers gain the benefit of the work, and sometimes at near zero cost on the basis that it is cheaper, for instance, to add pitched rooves to a terrace rather than miss one out.

    These are very brief scenarios with the intention to give you some reassurance, hopefully. Another instance is where owners gain a discounted purchase of newbuilds as part of the regeneration.

    The main point is to speak to those leading the proposals and find out what is exactly happening, what it means to you, and what options you may have.

  • Posted in: Housing Benefit cap

    F451's post | 13/02/2012 5:55 pm

    Does the MP explain how paying higher amounts of LHA to private landlords through restriciting the availability of cheaper social housing through Right to Buy (even if it is replaced then it will be at 80%MR so for higher HB) can help reduce the deficit when it is increasing total benefit costs, decreasing the amount of disposable income people have and so depleating growth?

    Perhaps he can also explain how scrapping the development and regeneration funds, stalling building, losing jobs and contracts, and resulting in the wiorst building output ever, has addressed the deficit.

    Perhaps the MP would care to explain how cuts for the poorest and boosts for the richest does anything to reduce the inequalities that led to the financial crisis - or perhaps paying Millions to advisors on how to encourage the poor to get by on less is justified.

    Oh the fun you must have with the urchin - what a shame the MP is so shy.

  • Posted in: Housing Benefit cap

    F451's post | 13/02/2012 4:01 pm

    Do press your MP on the point that turfing out the existing tenant does not make the home anymore affordable to a family that can not afford to rent in the area. Only rent capping can do that, unless of course people will be offered higher earnings to match housing cost increases in future.

    Who's the MP and can we come and watch?

  • Posted in: Building stronger communities

    F451's post | 13/02/2012 3:01 pm

    I'm reminded by the report elsewhere on the redvelopment at Craylands, Basildon, that Swan have been doing valuable work for many years, and currently. Not only using estate regeneration to target improved environments Swan have used social support and uplift, tying into neighbouring resources and part supporting resources for residents to be advised and to self improve through.

    I hope someone at Swan offers fuller details, but they may not connect the two as obviously this item is looking at the post riot scenario as if work has not been ongoing.

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