27 Apr 2006

A room of one's own.....

Hello darlings,

Quick, quick update:

Prolific poet and adopted uncle Jeremy Reed - after having been missing for months - has contacted me finally again, there is a yoga boom as England hosts its first international seminar I've known, Tam Dean Burn the actor and Bridgette from Creature Curious on Resonancefm have tried it plus Vic from Fast Records Played Slow - Auuummmm!

Also Jo Mevlin has started co-presenting the next series I'm producing on Resonancefm 'Arting Around' - we've had lots of good feedback, I'm enjoying it.

I've also been tailoring my sounds to make beats and we play soon at the ICA (end of May) though I have kindly been omitted from all listings (lovely people!).

B U T T H E B I G T H I N G I S :

Lots of people are asking about the RENT TO BUY scheme set up by govt(Labour!) in conjunction with building companies.

You get a flat, 1-2 bedrooms, all new with balcony etc -
It costs the same or less as normal rent to private landlords - some percentage of it (depending on your earnings) is a mortgage and the other is rent to the building company. That means when you sell you get a lump sum back (your share of the flat) and can put that down on a bigger place and get on the property ladder.

My boyfriend's brother did it and within 8 months he got all his rent back by selling. He now has a lump of money to invest/blow (I think he will blow if he can....)

Anyhow: I know it sounds good. But now you are rightly scratching your dainty head wondering where to go first.

Well, though you have a job, some status and are not below the poverty line, still you have to put your name on the council waiting list.

This is a convoluted process. Call your local council and give them your postcode. They will give you the nubmer of your local housing office, who at your request will send you the form to be on the list. Fill it in truthfully and don't worry too much about the sections asking for where you want to live or in what conditions. You won't really be opting for council housing at all, cause 90% likely you won't get it anyway. Funny thing life as we make it isnt it?

THEN - when the form is filled you can find out one day they open late and go in after work (or daytime anytime if you are a free-winger) and take in as many original documents as you can. I find its best to ring before and let someone know you are coming, you get more personal service. They should photocopy the docs and give you a little slip or something and take your form. in about ten days you receive a number for your waiting list.

In the meantime visit this website: http://www.housingoptions.co.uk/ho2/index.asp
and get them to send you a form. whenit comes fill it in and send it, ring them later to add your council number. They are really really crap by the way, you have to hound them but it is their duty to enlist you and help you, so don't feel abashed about hassling them. They havce been really useless espcially their website - housing options - lack of? Might be a more fitting name....

Meanwhile Guinness Trust told me about an offer you help to get a normal mortgage on a usual market flat/house and Ive been talking to them recenrtly they can;t remeber mentioning the scheme - I will get to the bottom of it! Meanwhile go direct to Tower Homes and Galleons Housing or some such builders of rent-to-buy schemes and apply direct to them using your council list waiting number....

I found out its not true. You must fill in the Housing Options form for optimum chances, but even before then you can approach the Housing Assocations (HAs) to see some sites...
The good ones around the place (not just London) are:

Tower Homes
Galleons Housing
Southern Housing
Guinness Trust
London & Quadrant
Family and Affinity

more later... HAD ANY SUCCESS AFTER READING THIS? please make me happy by telling me so!

.Good luck