A desperate mother of five said she feels ‘suicidal’ after eight years of living in a home riddled with damp.
Amanda Parrott’s three bedroom Pulborough home is gradually being consumed by terrible damp, leaving her family no choice but to live out of just two rooms.
“I’m suffering with severe depression because of the state of the house and my youngest boy, who is just two, has a recurring chest infection. Every week he gets better and then it comes back again,” said the 40-year-old.
The building is managed by housing agency Saxon Weald, which offers affordable homes for rent and for sale across the district.
In an attempt to repair the extensive degradation of the house in Rivermead, Amanda arranged for West Sussex County Council’s Environmental Health to inspect the area, which only confirmed her greatest fear.
“This is not just a little bit of damp. Environmental Health said the mould is unsuitable for us to be living in,” she said.
Next, Saxon Weald conducted its own survey of the home and reported that all the windows will need to be replaced, and the roof will have to be removed, according to Amanda.
“The kitchen cupboards are rotten. A new carpet was fitted in the front room - it’s only six months old and it’s already ruined. There’s also plaster falling off in one of my son’s rooms and water running down the walls,” she said.
Amanda converted the lounge into another bedroom for her 19-year-old son, but claims it is now ‘unusable’.
“Now we can only use two of the bedrooms,” she added.
After Saxon Weald’s verdict, Amanda claims the agency told her that it would be unable to make the repairs.
“Saxon Weald said we could move when they’ve had a quote from the company. They’ve now received it but the quote is too high, so they have refused to do any of the work,” she said.
Amanda and her five children are still waiting to be moved into a safer home.
“I feel suicidal - that’s why I’m on antidepressants,” she added.
A representative at Saxon Weald said that Amanda has caused the majority of her problems due to how she ‘treats her home’.
They said: “The property is in a poor state of repair, but the majority of the problems have been caused by the way the tenant treats her home.
“We will be doing extensive work, totalling around £40,000. With this level of expense and complexity, we need to get a second quote and plan the work appropriately, which will take some time.
“At no point have we said we can’t afford the work, and additionally, Ms Parrott has always said she does not want to move out while the work takes place.”