Living in luxury: How a family on benefits have been handed a £2million home in London

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Living in luxury: How a family on benefits have been handed a £2million home in London

Post by Guest on Sun Aug 14, 2011 3:31 pm

An unemployed couple and their family have been moved into a luxurious London home worth £2million - and pay it with a monthly £8,000 housing benefit funded by the taxpayer.

Unemployed Saeed Kahliif, 49, from Somalia, his wife Sayida and their children have been handed the keys to a sprawling six-bedroom home in West Hampstead, in North London. After moving from their Coventry home - which cost £1,000 a month in rent - the new property is thought to be one of the most expensive houses ever paid for by housing benefit.

Saeed Khaliif and his wife have been given the luxurious home in the exclusive London neighbourhood

Plush pad: The spacious lounge area in the £2m newly refurbished Hampstead home

The People reported that the family have moved from their cheaper house to the exclusive postcode so they can be nearer their friends and family who live in the capital.

Estate agents boasted that the opulent home is a 'stunning six-bedroom, two-reception house' and was 'recently refurbished to a high standard offering ample living space with a spacious en suite master bedroom.' Four of the bedrooms have an ensuite shower room, two have dressing rooms and it also boasts a 90ft garden. It is unclear how many children the family have.

The family can now count comedian and author Stephen Fry as their neighbour.

When approached by The People Mr Khaliif said in the three years that he had lived in the UK, he and his wife had not worked and were reliant on benefits to support them and their family.

Camden Council declined to comment to the newspaper, but Cllr Johnny Bucknell, who sits on their housing committee, said: 'When Camden housing is gridlocked and there is ample room up north, why are we encouraging people to move south?'

Cllr Chris Knight whose ward includes the family's home was puzzled as to why the taxpayer was funding the expensive upgrade when there were so many people desperately needing a home.

'It seems daft that we have people from this area who we can't house but are spending £8,000 on rent from someone outside of Camden.'

Although the government brought in new measures to cap housing benefits and try to stop outrageous rent prices being forced onto the public purse.

Capped at £400 a week, the Khaliif's new home was advertised at £7,800 a month, and would not be an option. But because the family moved before the changes have been introduced they can count the light and spacious home as theirs.

The Department of Work and Pensions, which funds housing benefits, told the newspaper: 'It is unfair on taxpayers that some claimants are in large homes most working families can afford. It is vital we lower housing benefit costs.' The rules will come into force in April and when claims come up for renewal claimants on housing benefits will have to look for homes they can afford.

Vulnerable families may be exempt from this.

Well this has to take the biscuit. Who lives in a house like this? I certainly don't


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