I arrived at the flat I was due to view, I thought to myself while waiting for the council to arrive that I wouldn’t have to decorate or get any furniture. She eventually arrived opened the door and shown me around, I stepped through the door and thought ‘Oh My Gosh what a state how on earth am I supposed to make this feel like home’. Anyway after viewing the whole flat it got better (apart from the smell of smoke, damp and no furniture whatsoever, just the bare floors (no flooring anywhere!) and dirty walls), as time passed on I got to the point where I signed for the keys, went through all the paper work and got handed over the keys.
I was so excited that I had my own flat, knowing me and daughter were safe. I found out the council had given me some B&Q decoration vouchers to help, so before I got them I went round at the weekend washed all the walls down and cleaned up the flat as it was quite dirty. About a week later I got the vouchers went and got my paint and everything. I painted what I could around my working hours, plus during all this chaos I had to change my address on all my benefits, my bank account, everything and set up all my TV, water, gas and electric accounts as well as apply for housing benefits, all before I got my daughter back from her grandmothers.
As stressful as this all was I then had to go to the council and ask them to come out and fix my radiators, which had to be replaced with new ones through my whole flat. Also my washer broke 3 times and flooded my kitchen 3 times! So word of advice make sure you get a decent washing machine!
I honestly wish I prepared more and saved up more money than I did, I had only saved up about £200 to get all my essentials like a microwave, cutlery, etc.
Luckily where I work knew somewhere I could get second hand furniture that deliver for you. So they referred me to The Arches at Trent Vineyard in Lenten. They do sofas, beds, wardrobes, drawers, towels, bedding, clothes anything you can think of, also I found out about another second hand place called Buttle UK, they do white goods (things like washing machines, fridge freezers, cookers, etc). I got a lot of my stuff like a washing machine off Gumtree because The Arches don’t have everything and Buttle UK could only give me a few things.
I work at Broxtowe Youth Homelessness and they do home starter packs that include a washing up bowl, Toaster, Kettle, frying pan, sauce pan, cleaning products like washing up liquid, dusters, washing power, etc. They also do toiletry parcels and food parcels too, which include the basics such as shampoo and conditioner, body wash and sanitary towels, deodorant and toilet roll. The food pack includes the basic tea bags coffee and sugar, pasta, tins and carton of milk etc. These are available to young people who have experienced housing crisis.
Most of all I’m grateful I had my family help me out by paying for my carpets and vacuum. Without everybody helping me out I don’t know what sort of state I would be in, so thank you everyone who helped with my flat and managed to get it finished within two weeks.