‘I wouldn’t let a dog live in the house council offered us’

Family of eight fear they'll be made homeless after being offered 'uninhabitable' house.

A family of eight fear they will be made homeless by the end of the month after rejecting a temporary house they believe is “uninhabitable”.

Liz and Vaughn Whitaker said the £1000-a-month property offered to them by Fife Council had holes in the wall and suffered from damp.

The family are being forced to leave their home of two years in Dunfermline because their landlord wants to move back in.

Mr and Mrs Whitaker fear the uncertainty is heaping stress onto their six girls, some of whom have additional support needs.

“We went to see it and I was devastated, I wouldn’t even let a dog live in that,” said Mrs Whitaker. “It was dirty, the walls were disgusting, there were holes in them – you could feel the air coming through them – and there was dampness.

“We knew it wasn’t going to be perfect, but to come into that and find out how much they wanted for it was shocking.

“I don’t want another family to go through what we went through, they shouldn’t have to put kids in there, councils shouldn’t be offering those properties.”

The family learned in March that their landlord wanted to move back into the property, so they joined the council’s homeless register and were offered the temporary accommodation seven months later.

Fife Council said it “sympathised” with the family and insisted it was working to find a solution.

Housing manager Alistair Black said: “We are in regular contact with this family and, while we sympathise with their situation, there is huge demand for larger family homes, and unfortunately there are no suitable houses available in the area. 

“We have offered temporary accommodation to help with their immediate need and we will continue to work with the family to make sure they have suitable temporary accommodation available to them.”