Single mum living without hot water and sleeping on floor in flat says there are days she wants to ‘take her own life’

A single mum-of-two says she is struggling to cope with the “horrific” conditions in her social housing flat. Rosemarie moved into her current flat just over two years ago - she found her home through Peabody housing association, who own and manage more than 67,000 homes in London and the South East.

Rosemarie and her two sons, aged 15 and seven, moved into theirMuswell Hillflat on February 3, 2020. By February 12, only nine days later, Rosemarie said she noticed a heavy leak coming down through her kitchen ceiling. Unfortunately for the family, that leak was only the beginning of the issues they’d go on to face.

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“First, the bathroom radiator wasn’t working. They came and they tried to fix it, but it still just comes on now and again,” Rosemarie toldMyLondon. “The radiator in the kids’ bedroom is constantly leaking as well. With the hot water, when you put your hand under it, it’s warm. But seconds later when you put it on your body, it’s cold.”

Mum-of-two Rosemarie said the lack of hot water in thepropertyhas led to huge issues for the family, and her sons struggle to wash themselves properly before going to school. She said it’s extremely upsetting, and her kids constantly complain about the water being too cold.

Rosemarie claims the heating in herNorth Londonflat does not work properly. This is a huge issue, as she claims the back door to the property hasn’t been sealed properly, meaning the flat gets cold very quickly. “There’s such a big gap around it - they tried to patch it up but it didn’t work. I’ve got slugs coming through the gap.”

According to Rosemarie, the conditions in her flat took a dramatic turn on January 2, earlier this year when her sons’ bedroom was hit by devastating flood damage. Rosemarie explained that the flood damage “mashed up” everything in the room, including the children's’ beds, lights and their possessions.

As a result, her two sons have been living without beds ever since, and she has given them her bed to sleep in. Now, she has been forced to sleep on the floor. “I had to give up my bed - that room is completely out of use,” Rosemarie said.

Rosemarie is a vulnerable tenant, with a long history of depression, anxiety, andOCD. She does not feel Peabody is taking hermental healthconsiderations into account, and said her living conditions have pushed her to a new low.

Single mum living without hot water and sleeping on floor in flat says there are days she wants to ‘take her own life’

Tearfully, Rosemarie toldMyLondon: “It’s long term, but since I moved to thatpropertyit’s been really bad. I’ve got days when I want to commit suicide.” She continued: “As soon as I get home, there are days when I’ve wanted to take my own life.”

Originally from Jamaica, Rosemarie has no family in the UK she can turn to for help. She said she has worked hard to make her home comfortable to live in, though the constant state of disrepair has made it almost impossible to go on living there. “I don’t want to move out, but with the conditions I have to move,” she said.

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A spokesperson from Peabody housing association toldMyLondon: "We are very sorry about the ongoing issues with [Rosemarie’s] home and understand her concerns, which we’re trying to resolve. Our surveyor and repairs contractor visited the property again yesterday to carry out a full inspection and we will be starting a programme of work straight away to fix these issues.

"Our local team will also be contacting [Rosemarie] to provide any extra support she needs. We are aware of the leak and hot water issues affecting the property and are working to get this resolved as quickly as possible.We’re committed to proactively tackling problems like this and investing in people’s homes for the long term. "

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