Health fears force fam­ily out of their ‘for­ever home’

Dad no­tices mold in at­tic af­ter be­ing in the house for three days

The Press and Journal (Inverness, Highlands, and Islands) - - NEWS - BY LOUISE GLEN

A fam­ily has said health con­cerns forced them to move out their “for­ever home” cost­ing them at least £1,000, the third fam­ily to leave the same prop­er­ties in a mat­ter of months.

The Green fam­ily moved into one of four houses owned by the High­land Small Com­mu­ni­ties Hous­ing Trust in Stron­tian, with a view to pur­chas­ing it af­ter build­ing up a de­posit in a rent-to-buy scheme.

Af­ter be­ing in the house for three days, dad Kevin no­ticed mold in the at­tic.

He told The Press and Jour­nal: “I am a plas­terer

“I am a plas­terer and damp proofer so I know what damp looks like”

and a damp proofer, so I know what damp looks like.

“We com­plained about the lack of ven­ti­la­tion in the loft space, and a con­trac­tor came out to deal with it. He drilled two holes, that still didn’t work – so an­other per­son came out and made big­ger holes that al­lowed mice to get into the house.

“When I looked at the blue­print plans for the houses I no­ticed the plans for ven­ti­la­tion in the loft hadn’t been car­ried out.

“In­stead of a £200 unit be­ing fit­ted in the loft space, a £20 unit had been fit­ted, they don’t do the same thing.”

Af­ter two years and se­ri­ous con­cerns about their chil­dren’s health, the fam­ily took the des­per­ate mea­sure of mov­ing out.

In­stead, they took a coun­cil prop­erty. As a “good­will ges­ture”, HSCHT re­funded a £500 de­posit but did not agree to re­pay­ing the £1,000 the fam­ily paid to­wards fu­ture own­er­ship.

Wife Ge­orgina said: “HSCHT ba­si­cally blamed us when we moved out the house, now other fam­i­lies are com­ing for­ward it seems that some­thing more needs to be done.”

Denise An­der­son, chair­woman of Su­nart Com­mu­nity Coun­cil, said: “We con­ducted an in­de­pen­dent sur­veyor’s re­port to be un­der­taken of the houses, and we have asked HSCHT to look at the re­sults.”

An HSCHT spokesman said: “The HSCHT has been work­ing closely with the con­trac­tor on a pro­gramme of re­me­dial works which has pro­vided im­proved ven­ti­la­tion to air­tight homes, that have been built to the cur­rent build­ing stan­dards.

“The HSCHT are com­mit­ted to con­tin­ued mon­i­tor­ing of the ef­fec­tive­ness of these im­prove­ments and we will con­tinue to li­aise with the ten­ants on an in­di­vid­ual ba­sis in this re­gard.”

COM­PLAINTS: Kevin Green and his son Archie who had to leave their house in Stron­tian af­ter pay­ing £1,000 to fu­ture own­er­ship

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