Homeless mother of three finds refuge and security in her mhs home

Life changed dramatically for Louise Holloway when her private landlord decided he wanted to sell his house.

Louise and her three children became homeless.

Pets had to quickly be re-homed and they suddenly found themselves hopping from sofa to sofa, trying everything to avoid a life on the streets.

After a long history of financial difficulties and struggles with mental health, Louise, aged 48, was at breaking point, fearful of what the future held for her and her and her family.

They were moved into a homeless hostel.

“It was horrible. Hideous. It knocked the wind out of my sails and I became agoraphobic again, feeling helpless and panicky”.

After months of misery Louise was introduced to Kent Homechoice, where she made bids on dozens of properties, desperate to escape the situation she was in.

“I was losing hope of getting anything. But then one day this house in Hoo came up. It was near my daughter’s school, near my doctors, it was absolutely perfect”.

mhs homes arranged a viewing before helping Louise and her children move in.

“It’s got double hand rails so I can move around safely, it’s got a high toilet, it’s in a lovely road, it has a little garden. I cried for weeks, I’m so blessed”.

The three bedroom house offers a safe-haven for her family and also has space for a piano, to encourage her 16-year-old daughter to achieve her dreams of becoming a music teacher.

She’s since won several music awards at school and is hoping to go to college to continue on this successful path.

“I’m so grateful, I’ve never been more grateful of anything. I wouldn’t change a thing” said mum Louise.

The best part is the fact it’s secure and affordable, neither of which were an option when she rented privately.

“I pay just over £600 a month which is less than half of what I’d pay in private rented accommodation – meaning I can get myself better, do some college courses and get back to work”, she said.

mhs homes strives to help people on lower incomes to rent or part-buy a home.

When asked about her views on affordable housing, Louise simply replied: “there just isn’t enough of it. The more properties that landlords like mhs can make, the more people that’ll get off of benefits, get back to work and start enjoying life”.

Ashley Hook, chief executive at mhs homes said: “We own and manage more than 8,500 homes in Kent and we are building more every year. We want to help as many people as possible and change their lives for the better, like we’ve managed to do for Louise and her family.”

This mum of three has been in her property for nine months and it’s been nine months of calm and stability.

“For the first time in eight years I can breathe. mhs homes are investing in me as a person and there’s no risk of me getting turfed out after six months, so long as I pay my rent and look after my house”, Louise said.

She’s hoping to get back to work and eventually look at a shared ownership scheme.

But if she did ever want to move the option for mutual exchange is available.

“There are people to help you with debt, with benefit enquiries, everything. mhs homes is not just a landlord, they do everything.
It’s a million other things as well as being a home provider”.

Have you got a story to share? Email Sarah at communications@mhs.org.uk