Raymond Singleton-McGuire, a local Boston Landlord for almost 40 years, states; “gone are the days when banks would offer you preferential loan rates if you rented to Housing Benefit tenants!!
The Housing Benefit payment system from your local Council changed many years ago from paying 4 weeks in advance to 4 weeks in arrears, overnight the banks had a change of policy towards Landlords with Housing Benefit tenants.
To make matters worse, a tenant has to be more than 8 weeks in arrears before the Council will forcibly pay the Landlord direct upon application! (that equals a loss of almost 3 months rent).
Furthermore, without notice to the Landlord the tenant can have a change of circumstances, whereby the rent is reduced, put on hold or stopped altogether.
The greatest risk to the Landlord is when the Housing Benefit tenant gives the required one month’s notice and secretly vacates the property the following day; sadly, the Landlord loses out again, as the Housing
Benefit, which is already paid in arrears, terminates immediately the tenant vacates a property. The Landlord is therefore not compensated for the one months notice.
Clearly, if there is such a shortage of rental accommodation and a backlog of around 11 years to house everyone presently on the Council’s waiting list, then certainly the above facts are less than favourable to encourage private Landlords to assist in the local housing dilemma.
Raymond Singleton-McGuire, a former council deputy leader has attacked his authority for wasting thousands of pounds after a two-year battle in which Boston Borough Council pursued a £25 parking fine that should never have been issued.
Local businessman Raymond Singleton-McGuire was given the ticket when he left his car in a council car park in 2014.
The car park was for use by councillors and staff only on weekdays – and although the ticket was issued for leaving his car outside the parking bay, Mr Singleton-McGuire argued that it should not have been dispensed in the first place.
The council’s Chief Executive at the time agreed to quash the ticket after it emerged that although the car park had been reclassified as public almost two years before, councillors and staff had not been told.
The council eventually let Mr Singleton-McGuire know a month after the ticket was issued.
Despite an apparent promise to quash the ticket, nothing was done, repeated calls for action were ignored, and in desperation, Mr Singleton-McGuire went to the then council leader Peter Bedford for help.
“He told me that the reputation of Boston Borough Council and his Party (Conservative) was at stake, and said that he had told officers not to communicate and spend any more time on the issue of the correct and proper procedure not being followed.
“This extended to freedom of information requests, without which my case in proving the council failed to follow the correct procedure was hampered.
“This was clearly what appeared to be an unorthodox interference and inappropriate use of political power denying me my statutory rights.”
A traffic penalty tribunal adjudicator report said that although Mr Singleton-McGuire was told four months after the ticket was issued that it would be reviewed by the Central Ticket Office, this did not happen as the council did not provide the required information and that he was deliberately not informed of the initial court date … which prevented him from appealing, and with the matter eventually ending up in the hands of bailiffs.
Mr Singleton-McGuire asked for costs of almost £2,000, but these were rejected as this was not usual practice, and the adjudicator felt that the case could have been dealt with more quickly by both sides.
“Perhaps that might have been the case,” said Mr Singleton-McGuire. “But Boston Borough Council went out of its way to be difficult”.
“My claim for costs included 100 hours of my own time at just £5 an hour, which was a token charge rather than a realistic one”.
“But I know as a former Portfolio Holder for finance that the costs to the council taxpayer would have been much much more – especially after dragging things out for more than two years, which makes me especially angry at the time when demands for even more council tax have been going out.”
Raymond Singleton-McGuire has already made contact with locals about not using local taxi firm ACORN!!!
Raymond Singleton-McGuire’s reported an incident experienced with Acorn Taxis after his Partner had a dangerous and unacceptable encounter with Acorn Taxis leaving her waiting on the streets for over 2 hours in the early hours of the morning, despite repeated phone calls.
No apology from the owner, Mr Zhahed Younis was forthcoming after receiving repeated promises of an investigation both to Mr Singleton-McGuire and Boston Borough Council (the Licensing Authority. Mr Singleton-McGuire, (a local property owner in Boston) blogged about Mr Younis’ atrocious behaviour regarding his company, Acorn Taxis, and subsequently Mr Singleton-McGuire has banned Acorn Taxis from using his car parks, driveways to his various properties and private roadway which he owns in the town. He also welcomes further calls and interest from the public regarding this matter.