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Hello,

 

Rather long story so hope you will bear with me, Me and my partner have been together for almost 3 years (but have known her for 11 years) a year ago we moved from england to wales because of a controlling, violent, ex who harassed us every single day of our lifes, having a horrible impact on their 2 children, which resulted in us leaving the bungalow she owned with her ex, he didn't want the property but refused to take his name off the mortgage and would not let us sell, simple because he wanted some form of control over both of us, but the mental and emotional effect it was having on her and the children meant we had to just leave in the end, stopped paying the mortgage (He hadn't paid any since he left and didn't really pay for a year before this) and the bungalow got repossed.

 

We struggled but manage to find another bungalow in wales on a short term tenancy of 6 months, from day one we had problems with oil dissapearing quickly and none stop boiler problems (not hot water, no heating) after none stop plumber visits we finally had a good plumber come out and found the oil tank was leaving, this was 4 months later, we were, at one point having to put oil in every week at a cost of £300+ it cost us in total, nearly £3,000 in those 4 months, then a week later, landlord sent us a notice to quit after we complained about the leaking oil tank, Unfortunetly, after spending so much on oil, we got behind in literally all of our bills, but both my partner and son are disabled with arthritis and needed heating/hot water so had no choice but to pay for the oil.

 

So we find ourselfs having to move again, need to find months rent in advance, deposit, etc, again found another place, moving costs including deposit etc were again £2,000, As usual with our luck (it would seem) a few months into the tenancy we found mold in our bedroom, found out it had spread along the back wall, all under our bed and wardrove, clothes, everything, went back and fourth with the local council, who said it was condensation, although, using our own tools and paying for a specialist to come out, it was found to be Rising damp and was not safe to live in, LL refused to fix the problem and also refused to let us leave the tenancy so we ended up threatening them with court, by this point there was so much mold in the house we ended up having to stop in hotels as our youngest (now 4 years old) was getting very ill from the mold.

 

Finally let us out of the tenancy, but again, we had not recovered from paying so much for the oil so had gotten behind on bills and now we were facing moving again, so yet again, behind on bills.

 

So again, Moved, found a 12 month tenancy this time, managed to get social loans and stump up enough to pay for rent in advance/deposit, had to sell pretty much ererything we had to do so, even going without a bed for a month (kids had no tv in the house, no consoles, nothing, just clothes on their back) but bills have just mounted up and up and up and e verytime we tried to start paying one back, another would pop through the post, with more charges, debt collectors at the door.

 

It is now at a point where we physically can't afford to pay the rent unless we go without heating and food as me and my partner only eat once a day (small meal) so to make sure we have enough for the children to at least eat.

 

Water bill for the new property came a short while ago, a year in advance, electric bill was extremely expensive, so not been able to pay them, so debt has just mounted up again, To pay the rent we have had to stop paying the bills, Didn't know what to do, we need a roof over our heads :(

 

Totalling things up with electric/gas/water at all 3 properties we have had to move to over the past year, we now owe just over £4,000 on bills alone, our credit card got cancelled as well as we had to use that to buy things all the time, so now they are chasing us for £8,000 on that too.

 

On top of that, the mortgage company is now sending debt collectors to our door to recover £40,000 left on the mortgage.

 

We have finally admitted defeat :sad: and admitted the fact we can not afford to private rent anymore and so have gone to the council of where we used to live (before we moved to wales) explaining the situation, but we can not afford the rent here next month (if we buy food, we will literally be £300 short) and can't take out anymore loans, explained this to a council advisor, filled all the forms in but have politely been told that we will get low priority (despite having medical points for both my partner and my step son + local connection as we have lived their most of our lifes and all of our family and friends are there) because we have a roof over our head but explaining we can't pay the rent i got told then we will be making ourself intentionally homeless so they won't have a priority to home us at all, leaving us out on the streets, simply being told to rent privately, which we cant do.

 

I am not sure what to do, can someone please help? where do we stand ?

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You won't get anywhere until you get a notice to quit. Councils won't act until you are actually homeless. Just being in threat of it is not enough despite trying to do the best for your family and looking ahead. It's a horrible situation to be in and they do class you as making yourself intentionally homeless because you can't afford it. It's just wrong.

 

Don't just limit yourself to one authority, try other councils as well. Do use the money you have to eat and heat your property as it's not going to do any of you any good if you go without.

 

You could claim against your ex-landlord for the costs of the leak. I think there is an Ombudsman for that but don't quote me. I wouldn't worry about the bills for now. If need be just write to them explaining the situation and enclose a budget sheet of what your income and expenditure are. They can't have what you haven't got.

 

Do speak to your landlord and tell them you are having difficulties as it's probably better that way instead of just missing the payment.

 

Are you claiming everything you can? Are you working? Are the bills correct? You can get in touch with the supply companies and ask what help is available as they have grants and can structure it so you don't have to pay it all at once, especially if the household has people with disabilities.

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Hi Crapstone, thank you for your response.

 

I agree, it is wrong :( but they refuse to budge on the matter, just telling us to private rent somewhere else when we do get the notice to quit.

 

the reason we chose our old council is because we thought we would have priority there due to having local connections (family, friends, have lived their previously) and medical needs (Both partner and step son are disabled).

 

We didn't pay the rent on time this month (or last month) this time, it was a week late and after a few days LL was constantly asking us where it was as was the estate agent.

 

Unfortunetly we have to have the heating on full all day also as for some reason the house won't stay warm (Loft has little insulation) have spoken to estate agent about this numerous times and got nowhere (we really are having no luck!).

 

We have thought about claiming from our old LL because of the mold etc, but not sure if we can handle the stress with everything else that has gone off, with all our friends and family hundreds of miles away it's so hard.

 

We are quite scared to tell our landlord about this as she had numerous problems with the last tenant not paying rent as well as damaging the house :(

 

I am a full time carer to my partner, so i only get carers allowance and income support (paid into her account) as well as highest rate of DLA, child tax credits, etc.

 

I have spoken to a few of the providers to which we owe money to, including British Gas & Swalec, both have said no, want full payment or nothing, see you in court, etc.

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Your providers can't do that. They have to work out reasonable terms even if they think they don't have to. Put it in writing to them and do look at their websites as they list what grants are available and to who.

 

I still think you would be better off speaking to your landlord and reasoning with her than just ignoring it and leaving it until the last minute. It never hurts to ask and you can't make the situation any worse.

 

SHELTER may be able to take on your case and give you some advice so look them up and see what they say. You may be able to get help with a deposit for a new place or some temporary housing.

 

You will get through this. It's just not fair what you have to go through and I'm just sorry I can't help more. All I can say is just keep pushing on and don't neglect yourselves as you need to eat to fight this.

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You need to see CAB debt mnagement advisor asap (or similar free Govt Agency like MA?)

They may be able to re-schedule debts with some of your creditors and work out a manageable budget.

Roof, food & warmth are all priority debts. If you are evicted again via s8 g8 for non-payment of rent, many Councils now regard that as making yourself 'intentionally homeless.

Gas & leccy may insist on installing pre-payment meters to recover cost of fuel & debt over time.

Water should be payable in half-yearly amounts.

Get a credit report £2 ea for both you and partner, at least from Experien or Equifax.

Chasing ex LLs now will be difficult and expensive up front, even via SCC.

Why did your partner leave the part-owned bungalow and not just get a Court Injunction against abusive ex? With hindsight the app start of your financial problems.

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agree go to CAB and see if you can get debts frozen and make token payments until back on feet.

Again contact shelter for problems with LL etc. they may be able assist with advice or even action to speak to them.

Edited by raydetinu

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Shelter help line 0808 800 4444 - the lines can be quite busy so you'll need to keep trying but it's worth it for the invaluable advice they can give you.


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