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Aren’t We All Residents?

We all either own where we live, or rent from an owner to live there. If you agree with this, why do think residents that rent are the last to be consulted about matters that affect them.

We all either own where we live, or rent from an owner to live there. We can be both an owner of our home, and a resident in it.

Now that’s established – since everyone, with the exception of the homeless (that’s another story), lives in a home. Isn’t everyone a resident?

What type of Resident are you?

If you agree with this, why do think residents that rent are the last to be consulted about matters that affect them.

We humans, come in all shapes, sizes, backgrounds, cultures, classes, abilities.

To be grouped into one bag is a disservice, and yet – this is exactly what happens with Social Housing, Students, and on occasion Private Renters.

For Social Residents, it’s the idea that we’re all poor, unable to speak well, struggle with mental health issues, get ‘affordable’ rent rates, etc – that prevent us from truly being heard. Approximately 35% of the UK rents, of that 16% rent from social landlords. Millions of us. Some of us are ‘professionals’, if that means we’ve held a title or position, or are educated to a specific level. Maybe it means we’ve had managerial roles, instead of being in the field – who cares? Some of us work smart, or hard (either way), without a title, or label, perhaps a sole trader, business owner, or someone who just doesn’t like being labelled. To feel the need to expose ones self, to highlight expertise or experience, or a level of professionalism, as a resident – simply to be listened to – has unfortunately become common. Still, nothing changes, if you’re still seen merely as a resident.

For students and private renters – you’re constantly battling the impression that all tenants are bad. Don’t look after properties, and often require chasing for, pretty much everything. The questions about whether a landlord would accept themselves as one, is hardly ever raised. Why not? Most of the time the responsibilities of ownership, and management are so confused, and complex, with many middle-men – it’s not wonder these questions never get asked, or answered sincerely. It’s always usually someone else’s problem, or responsibility.

Which brings me to.

If we are all residents, we are all responsible for our comfort, and safety at home. Regardless of our role.

To put this into context, if you’re a Development Manager of a Housing Association, it’s very likely (as we’ve established) you’re also a ‘Resident’. You cannot put yourself in shoes that you cannot find. But you can use this fact to investigate, find out – ask the questions!

Don’t assume because we are all residents, all our experiences are the same!

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