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Ask James Mather Your Own Question
James Mather
James Mather,
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 22629
Experience:  Senior Partner at Berkson Wallace
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my parents live in a home owned by myself and 2 sisters. Until

Customer Question

my parents live in a home owned by myself and 2 sisters. Until recently this property was owned by one sister and my brother. (my brother passed away 12 months ago and his share of the property transferred to my other sister and I). Our parents have lived in the house as tenants since 1995. In 1995 they signed a simple tenancy agreement drawn up by my sister and brother, in lieu of rent they agreed to pay the annual property insurance and fully maintain the premises internally and externally. In recent years they have found themselves in hardship and have only been able to afford the insurance premium. Maintainance of the property was not kept up and the house has since had structural problems becuase of this. My sisters and I have recently paid several thousands of pounds to put much of this right. I have contacted the local Housing Benefit office as a landlord to enquire if they will support an application for my parents to receive housing benefit and in turn pay rent to their landlords as an amendment to the 1995 agreement we have. I have been told that a claim will probaly not be permitted as the property is owned and tenanted between family members. There is a mortgage over the property (left by my late brother) that my sisters and I are struggling to meet and we find ourselves in a situation where we own a property with a mortgage with tenants inside and no revenue from this. Whilst we would never consider asking our parents to move the situation is fast becoming untenable. Do you have any advice as to how we can best apply for some help with our situation?
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  James Mather replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your question here on Just answer. It is my pleasure to try and assist you with this today. Please bear with me if I need to ask for any further information from you in order for me to be able to advise you fully. My name is Law Denning and I am a practising solicitor. I have been an expert on this website in UK law since 2008. During that time, as you appreciate, I have answered thousands of questions from satisfied users on a variety of subjects.
Because we are all in practice with clients and court and other users, I might not always respond in minutes, particularly evenings and weekends. Please bear with me in that case. I will be online and off-line all day most weekdays and weekends.
Do you have a specific question?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

what extra information do you need?

Expert:  James Mather replied 4 years ago.

Your parents will not be eligible
for housing benefit on this property because of the close relationship between
you and them. What you have been told therefore is correct.

I can understand that you don't
want your parents particularly to move out but there would be no help available
as I explained, either for you or the council.

And sorry to have to tell you
therefore that it is a case of either your parents paying rent, you putting up
with the situation or them going on the local authority housing list

I'm sorry, I appreciate this is
not the answer you wanted but there is no point in me misleading you


Does that answer the question
even though it is not what you want to hear? Can I answer any further points?