View Full Version : I'm Homeless (UK).
05-28-2003, 06:42 AM
Okay i'm not homeless homeless (living on the streets out of a cardboard box) since i have my sister's couch to crash on and can always skitter on over to the girfriend's when i feel the need for a nice warm bed but i am still "without home".
I won't go into the details, suffice to say that i got kicked out of the place i was renting through no fault of my own and due to circumstances outside of my control. The net result is, however, that i am now having to househunt.
Which i hate doing with a passion.
Basically i'm sh*t-hot at the things you need to do when you find a place (how to negotiate contracts, what to look out for e.g. gas certificates, how to change locks etc. etc.) but i suck at actually searching for places.
So I'm putting out an appeal to LonDopers and Ex-LonDopers everywhere:
Whether its general advice, suggested Letting Agents to try, adverts spotted in local papers etc. etc.
"HELP ME FIND SOMEWHERE TO LIVE!" :D
the "need to know" facts are as follows:
Garius: A 23 year old male Web-Developer. Kicked out of his house a few weeks ago.
Budget: 400pcm inclusive (max)
GariBestMate: A 23 year old male advertising salesman. kicked out of his house two months ago. Moved back home - now on verge of killing parents.
Budget: 300pcm inclusive (max)
Find somewhere to live.
It could be:
1) two studio places relatively close to each other (a possibilty)
2) a houseshare (unpleasant but we'll do it - its a shame we don't know anyone else househunting)
3)a two-bed place (a "Pigs might fly" eventuality given our budget).
1) Ideally no further out than zone 4
2) Easily commutable to central London (Where we both work)
3) Must be north of the River
SDMB don't fail me now... :)
05-28-2003, 06:51 AM
Just a quick word from someone who working in a council housing office for about 6 months.
I know you didn't ask about this, but I'm going to say it anyway in case there are others who are in the same boat as you, reading this.
You can put you're name on the housing list, but you'll have about zero priority, because as you have somewhere to live with immediate family, you won't be classed as homeless.
And you also mentioned a bed at your gf place
from www.shelternet.org.uk (http://www.shelternet.org.uk/homeless/homeless-535-Een-f0.cfm), legal definition of homelessness:
you have no home in the UK or anywhere else in the world
you have no home where you can live together with your immediate family
you can only stay where you are on a very temporary basis
you don't have permission to live where you are
you have been locked out of home and you aren't allowed back
you can't live at home because of violence or threats of violence which are likely to be carried out against you or someone else in your household
it isn't reasonable for you to stay in your home for any reason (for example, if your home is in very poor condition)
you can't afford to stay where you are
you live in a vehicle or boat and you have nowhere to put it
05-28-2003, 06:54 AM
If anyone wants any council housing advice, they can email me, or even start a new thread.
05-28-2003, 07:04 AM
yeah i work in government too and have mates at various housing offices.
They all say the same thing - there is no way i could clock up enough points to get a council place - i earn a decent wage, i have no dependents, i can (like you say) live with relatives etc. etc.
05-28-2003, 07:16 AM
I know your list said that it must be north of the river, but if you're willing to be a bit flexible I'd suggest having a look around Lewisham. I lived down there for about five years and it's not so bad. It's pretty well connected as well (DLR, Tube, Rail etc) if you're near the high street. Cheap, too.
Pretty much everyone I know lives either a short way south of the river or much, much further to the north. I just split the difference and moved to Holborn.
05-28-2003, 07:25 AM
Hmm. Next door to me is up for rent. They want £750 per month but the last tenants paid £650.
Of course, it's just outside Dorking and hence doesn't pefectly fulfil the criteria. But on the plus side, you'd get to live next door to me. Unless I move, of course. Who knows what the future will bring? Not I. What do you think I am, some kind of medium or something? Well actually I do tend to take a medium. But sometimes it feels a bit tight. Like now, which is why I'm back on my diet. Detoxing. I'd kill for some proper food right now, actually. Mmmm cake.
What do you mean you don't want to live next door to me?
05-28-2003, 07:36 AM
i'm beginning to see why the place next door to you is empty, kabbes ;)
And personally i'd kill to live in holburn - since its where i work :D
Slightly south of the river isn't a problem. Its just that it would have to be zone 2 or 3 - anywhere further out and we are no better off than we were in twickenham.
the problem we have with living further out is travel costs - they become extortianate. The cost of commuting each day is impossibly high.
05-28-2003, 07:57 AM
Well, Lewisham's right on the zone 2/3 border (counts as zone 2 if you're heading inwards though). I used to get a train every morning from St John's station (a dismal little concrete pad one stop up from Lewisham) to Cannon St. 15 minute ride and there I was in the heart of the city.
I have, over the years, spent a lot of time in south London. Camberwell's OK. Avoid Peckham. Avoid Nunhead like the plague. By comparison, Lewisham was almost respectable.
Living in Holborn can be an interesting experience. It's like a very, very discreet red light district. If I lean perilously over the edge of my balcony I can almost see the City's only licensed sex shop.
05-28-2003, 10:31 AM
"A man, believed to be despondent over the state of London Transport platform design in suburban London, has thrown himself to his death from a balcony in Leather Lane, Holborn, in what is believed to be a suicide protest over the lack of sex shops in the City."
GMTV, Thursday, June 29, 2003...
05-28-2003, 10:42 AM
It was only a matter of time. I've been saying for ages that London needs more sex shops.
05-28-2003, 11:04 AM
There could be worse epitaphs.
05-28-2003, 12:36 PM
best places to look are Loot and newsagents windows. For £700 pcm you're going to have to look pretty hard. When I first came to london I lived in Ilford (zone 4 but red hot connections to the city) and your budget would just about cover it.
Other than that its the badlands (SE London), or perhaps a bit further out but well connected eg Croydon.
05-28-2003, 02:09 PM
I recommend Hackney. Lots of groovy people (and not too scary), the tube doesn't run through it so it's cheap, but it's still pretty close to Central/Victoria line and British Rail. It's well-serviced by buses that take you right to Liverpool St or Tottenham Court Road for a quid. I lived just on the Walthamstow side for around 300 pcm in a houseshare, and it was awesome.
05-28-2003, 02:33 PM
Hey Garius, you're almost a neighbour - I'm in Richmond. Coincidentally, I used to work in Holborn too.
Sorry to say I haven't anything useful to add. But the housing crisis in the UK will be the subject of the mother of all rants in the pit before long. How can the government not realise that something is seriously wrong when the smallest property is only available to someone earning FIVE TIMES the average wage! It's all driven by the buy-to-let boom - half the nation suddenly realised they could get something for nothing, and have effectively locked out the other half. Grrrr... I'll save it for the pit.
Good luck to you.
05-28-2003, 05:09 PM
Loot is your best bet. You probably know that already. It's out Thursday morning, get up bloody early and starting phoning right away, places go fast. The Guardian has a small flatshare section in the Saturday edition's TV guide too.
Kentish Town and Tufnell Park should be relatively cheap. Also try Crouch End (further out, no tube, but on the 91 bus route to Holborn), Holloway Road etc. None of them glamourous (although Crouch End okay) but should be more affordable for it.
Can give plenty of information on Northern Line Edgware Branch stops if needed. Email/phone via website linked below.
05-28-2003, 05:59 PM
I just gotta say, I love the names of some of these locations:
and my favorite so far:
See, here in the US we give our towns regular names...like Belchertown (http://www.belchertown.org/)
05-28-2003, 11:06 PM
Laughing Lagomorph - how about Pratt's Bottom to add to your list?
05-29-2003, 01:56 AM
Try this (http://www.moveflat.com/) too.
05-29-2003, 04:51 AM
Crusoe - yeah, GariBestMate works in Kentish town, but even thats expensive these days - anyone know what Finchley and Mill Hill are like?
cowgirl - cheers, we were looking at Hackney, but it was the travel possibilities that we were wary about.
Reuben - I went to uni at St. Mary's and never left the area. Every now and then the girlfiriend still manages to drag me down to o'neils in richmond too ( :rolleyes: ). House prices these days are ridiculous anywhere in that area except Hounslow (ick). As an example, they just sold the house we lived in as students (an absolute dive with 3 bedrooms and subsidence) for over half a mill!
Laughing Lagomorph - If you like that lot then you'll love the name of the area where my university was - Strawberry Hill. And Take a look at the London Tube Map for a good giggle :)
05-29-2003, 05:14 AM
Finchleys OK, typical well-to-do suburbia (Margaret Thatcher was MP for Finchley Central), easy enought to get to, but beware the northern line.
05-29-2003, 05:17 AM
oh jesus - is it full of tories?? :eek:
i tend to try and avoid the tube. if i can get a bus to anywhere vaguely central in the morning then i'll run the rest.
yes i don't mind jogging to work. yes my co-workers hate me.
05-29-2003, 05:37 AM
Originally posted by garius
oh jesus - is it full of tories?? :eek:
Yes. That's why it's nice.
Don't like tories? Live in one of the labour hell holes like peckham (or Hampstead or Putney er.....I'm losing this aren't I?)
05-29-2003, 06:18 AM
Try www.findaproperty.com as well. Its an agents website, and it has a lot on it, but doesn't seem to be updated very often. Most of the time when you phone up the place has gone, but the agent will usually have a couple of other places that can view. We got the place we're living in at the moment from an agent we found on that site.
Loot is also pretty good as others have said.
I can't really advise about areas, as i've always lived south of the river and it sounds like you're trying to avoid that! If you want any advice about south london areas on the northern and victoria lines though just let me know. I've lived in most of them at one point or another!
05-29-2003, 06:24 AM
Garius, 3 of my mates in Walthamstow have a house share and one of them is moving out in June. £300 pcm but its just the one room. Quite close to Victoria Line.
I'd suggest checking in Loot, or going round the Zone3-4 stations and looking in newsagents windows. Ignore the "dusky maiden, unhurried service" cards and you'll find some cheapo houses.
05-29-2003, 06:55 AM
hammersmith is the new option - there are two female co-workers of gariMate who are househunting too, and we were looking at four beds.
Brainfizz - i looked at walthamstow, its quite a nice area (my sister lives there)
I'm an Arsenal Fan and Blairite. Does that make me the Anti-Owlstretchingtime
Can i be your nemesis? :)
05-29-2003, 01:51 PM
West Hampstead is very good, not as expensive as Hampstead proper but getting that way. Kentish Town shouldn't be horrendously expensive (it's not that nice). Camden Road has some decent places and isn't as expensive as Camden Town. Golders Green and Belsize Park are good if you can afford them but I certainly can't.
05-29-2003, 02:10 PM
I got my current place in Loot after months of trawling the internet (and never finding anything and when I thought I had, it was a dive).
I got 2 issues of Loot - easy peasy - with cheaper and better quality, letting agents don't tell you about the damp, the cockroaches, and the fact that the "bedroom" was once a living room but now has a double bed shoved in front of the fire!
Stokey's fairly cheap, down the road from Manor House tube, loads of restaurants and pubs - and Clissold Park. 73 bus... need I go on? lol
05-30-2003, 03:17 AM
proximity to good beer is, of course, our primary concern. ;)
05-30-2003, 06:16 AM
Last Night I was at wimbledon station, and there's a newsagent there that is chocca with accommodation ads for the Sw19 area, which is nice and easy to get into town from (I live in southfields).
If you could stick another ton(ish) on your budget; robert would be your father's brother.
So, nemesis, there you go: Tolerable and affordable
Owl (the solutions bloke).
05-30-2003, 06:24 AM
ta Owl but we can't afford another ton - not without sacrificing important things like:
1) Sky TV
Which we aren't prepared to do :D
05-30-2003, 06:26 AM
It's fun to stay at the YMCA
05-30-2003, 07:34 AM
I live near to Ramsbottom , for all those enjoying a good laugh at English place names.
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