Ten years ago, my dad decided to invest in property. Over time, he purchased three houses. He rented one out to my sister, Sasha, another one to my sister, Millie and then when she wanted to move house, I moved into Millie’s old house and rented it from Dad while Dad bought another property and rented it to Millie. For the last year, Sasha hasn’t been paying her rent properly, sometimes she misses it altogether and Dad warned her that he would treat her like any other tenant and evict her if she continued to do so. It happened again so last week, he gave Sasha two months notice to move out. He sent me an email today which read:
“Hi Annie, As you know I am selling the house that Sasha has been renting and I have now decided that I want to sell your house too. I have some options for you:
1. I sell the house with you in it. This is normally about £20,000 below the market price. This would have to happen straight away as the Government will change buy-to-let property rules from 1st April; stamp duty is being doubled for buy-to-let. I will give you 5% of any gain to help you with time for viewings etc.
2. You find somewhere else and I sell the house with no tenant and I give you £20,000.
3. We leave things as they are for now but no longer than five years.
Let me know your thoughts.
I was livid. Two weeks ago, Dad rang me up to tell me that he had given Sasha notice on her house and that he was selling and said “I’m ringing to let you know because I don’t want you to worry. I won’t be selling yours. There’s never a problem with your rent so no need for you to worry.” But now he’s done this. I’m so shocked and so hurt. I thought we could stay in this house for as long as we wanted. I’m so angry, too. He said to me a year or more ago that if ever he needed to sell any of the houses, Millie’s would be first as hers was the most expensive. I bet he hasn’t given her notice.
I went upstairs and told the kids. They were as shocked and angry as I am. We talked about which option to take. I said having a new landlord in this house was out of the question as we couldn’t risk that he/she would either evict us soon after or raise the rent to a level we can’t afford. I said we couldn’t afford to move to another house as big as ours so if we left here, Josh and Alice would have to move into their own places and just Katie, Annie and I would move into a new house. Also, if we took the £20,000 we’d be no better off as you can’t have savings like that when you receive benefit help which we do, so as soon as the money ran out, I’d be back in the same position I’m in now – trying to pay rent I can’t afford. And so we decided we’d have to go for the option of staying here for the next five years.
I got in the shower and I cried so hard. I can’t believe he has done this to us and now I know I can’t trust him, so even if I tell him I want to stay, I can’t trust him not to ask us to leave anyway, probably without giving us any money to help. I feel like I’m in an impossible situation, all created by the only man that I thought I could trust to always look out for me.