An Arbroath family contacted the Herald this week to highlight the pitfalls of using Angus Council’s house swapping facility.
Tracey King and her partner, Dawn Glennie, have spent months battling with Angus Council to help them make their new home a safe place for them to raise their son, Nathan.
On April 1 the couple swapped their council flat in Monifieth for a council house in Brechin Road and discovered that not only were the front and back gardens a jungle filled with dangerous debris but that the gas fire had been inexpertly removed and the back door had been kicked in. Dawn added: “It’s not like we’ve just moved in and we’re demanding all this stuff is done. We are trying and it’s only since we realised that it’s too much for two people that we’ve asked for help.”
Tracey continued: “Whenever we cut down anything I have to fight with the council to send out the cleaning crew to come and take the stuff away. Some of it has been in piles six feet high. If I was a new tenant then the garden would have been cleared, but the council said this is something completely different.
“We want the house and the garden, the problem is the council won’t help us at all.”
She continued: “It’s more of a warning for people getting into house swapping, I’m sure it’s going to be on the up with the Bedroom Tax and the council needs to sort out its policies.”
An Angus Council spokesperson said: “Prior to the exchange, the tenant was advised that the garden was overgrown and they would need to satisfy themselves as to the extent of this as it would be their responsibility to maintain the garden. We acknowledge that there were defects in the home which should have been picked up prior to the exchange being granted and have apologised to the tenant for this lapse in our service. However, all repairs were carried out as quickly as possible.”
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