Phoebe Parke | Social Media Editor | Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Man Found Living In Gas Meter Cupboard Was Paying £250 A Month In Rent

A Man Found Living In Gas Meter Cupboard Was Paying £250 A Month In Rent

The Debrief: A recent raid in east London has revealed some horrifying living conditions

Housing crisis news claxon: a recent raid on houses in east London has revealed some of the shocking conditions people in the area are living in, and the unliveable spaces they are paying rent for. 

One man was found sleeping in the gas meter cupboard of a house, with only space for his mattress squashed into the tiny area. According to The Guardian, housing inspectors believe he was paying £250 a month in rent for the space, which had no ventilation.  

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And in the same house, inspectors found six people sharing three bunk beds in one small room, all are believed to be working in the restaurant industry. 

‘It cannot be right in the 21st century, in one of the world’s wealthiest cities, a young man is being forced to pay hundreds of pounds to rent a cupboard under the stairs, sleeping alongside the gas meter,’ said Robin Wales, the mayor of Newham. 

‘The scenes we saw on this visit are a timely reminder that, while by tackling bad landlords we are driving up standards, there is still much to do. That is why it’s imperative that the government allow us to continue with this work, and stop the exploitation of tenants.’

And this wasn’t the only place these kinds of unsafe living conditions were found, inspectors also found six people living in a shed, paying £200 a month per person to rent the space. 

We’ve all heard of renting horror stories; unfair landlords, random fees being added out of nowhere, and nightmare conditions, but it shouldn’t be the case that working people in the UK can’t afford a decent place to rest their heads – with ventilation, reasonable space and all for a fair price. 

Landlords who benefit from tenants living in these conditions will be punished – the council has the power to impose fines and even ban landlords whose properties have been found to fall short. 

The Debrief’s Make Renting Fair campaign went some way towards holding landlords to account for their extortionate letting fees. 

With over 4 million households renting in England, the campaign was able to influence the government to ban letting fees, with help from Baroness Olly Grender, the Liberal Democrats and Shelter. 

But there’s still a long way to go, if these are the cases that have been found out by the council in one series of raids, how many more people are living in conditions worse than these? 

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Tags: Housing Woes