To the anger of neighbours, the family of ten are allowed to live in a six-bedroom end-of-terrace Georgian townhouse in one of London’s most fashionable areas, populated by high-flying lawyers and stockbrokers.
The family use housing benefits to pay a heavily discounted rent for the four-storey house in Islington – close to Tony Blair’s former home – which boasts a variety of period features, including chandeliers and wood flooring.
The house also has balconies and a large back garden, while almost £100,000 was spent on extensive renovations last year to create two extra bedrooms for the family.
The family are understood to pay the council just over £1,000 a month in rent, yet if the property were rented on the private market it could command up to £6,000 a month.
As the house is owned by the council, which has set an artificially low rent, the case is not covered by the Coalition’s benefit reforms, which are designed to stop large families claiming huge sums in benefits to live in mansions far beyond the reach of most hard-working taxpayers.
Yesterday two men from the Somali family were seen leaving the house and driving away in a new black Vauxhall car.
Neighbours said some of the family were believed to work as taxi drivers and private chauffeurs.
- Ten-strong Somali family on benefits live in a £2m council home (thesun.co.uk)
- Welfare status (thesun.co.uk)
- Somali family on benefits handed keys to £2million luxury ‘council’ home on one of London’s most affluent streets (dailymail.co.uk)