Dear Sheffield City Council,

I am at an utter loss, frankly. Trying to get a council house/flat from you is akin to pulling the teeth from a shark with nothing but a soggy toothpick. Every week I log on to the property shop website, select my preferred area and hope for some good properties to pop up. And they do. Oh, how they do. I have seen flats in glorious areas at decent prices, I have seen modest houses in quiet suburban streets. And along with every single one of them I see a big notice saying ‘only available to over 60s’ or ‘only available to priority customers.’ So I sigh and trawl through the 10-16 pages of houses listed, and finally I will stumble across two or three with the miraculous words ‘waiting time of 1-3 years’. That’s me! 4 years waiting time I’ve got, I can have that one! However, something is terribly wrong. Unlike all the lovely over-60/must have children/must have a mental problem/must have an addiction properties, all of these ones seem to be in the roughest parts of the town it is possible to live in. I bid anyway, anything is better than nothing I suppose? And so I wait, for 6 months now, and so far I have viewed two properties. One was not bad, had a kitchen the size of a shoe box, but the area was liveable. Sadly, I didn’t have enough waiting time and it was given to somebody else. But no matter, it’ll be fine. The next one will be ours. And it was, the next one I viewed was offered to me, but sadly I had to politely decline, because unfortunately the area was in all likelihood far more dangerous than Beirut at the height of war. Good job I didn’t accept because not a month later the flat was set on fire and a girl was badly beaten on the estate. I fear I wouldn’t have lasted two days.
So this is my gripe. I work hard for my money, I am sensible and have not had children at a painfully young age. I don’t take drugs, I’m not insane, I claim no benefits. And how do you reward me, council? With no home, because I have some vague sense of standards. Why not go private, I hear you ask? Because I can’t afford the advance payments, as I am struggling to get by only paying £10 a week rent to my partner’s grandmother. So I’ve come up with two solutions:

  1. Find some sort of magic potion that will age me dramatically so I can get a nice house.
  2. Get knocked up, form a heroin addiction and subsequently go mad. I’ll have a house before you can say ‘leeching the system’.

Thank you for your time,
Yours Sincerely,
Given up all hope.