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Thousands afraid to ask landlords for repairs

1 in 12 people keep quiet about problems. Credit: ITV News West Country

Thousands of people in the South West are scared to ask private landlords for repairs, in case they get evicted.

The housing charity Shelter says 1 in 12 people keep quiet about problems. Three per cent of tenants in the South West also said they had been evicted for complaining to landlords.

South West housing market may be recovering

Sales of homes may be rising in our region. Credit: Press Association

There are signs the South West housing market is continuing to recover.

According to a survey by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors, the number of homes sold in the South West is at the highest level since February 2008, and it is higher than than the UK as a whole.

Prices also continued to rise, with nearly half of people reporting an increase. The report says predictions for the future are upbeat.

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Demand for houses rises at fastest rate for over a year

Sold sign
The RICS say buyers want to see what's available before Christmas Credit: Chris Ison/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Demand for houses in the South West rose at its fastest rate since summer last year, according to a survey by the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors.

Despite this, prices continued to fall, although the RICS said the amount of homes coming onto the market also improved.

South West bucks trend as rental rates fall

Rental rates in the South West have fallen this year Credit: John Giles/PA Wire

Whilst rent in the private housing sector reached another new high last month, the South West has bucked the trend, with rates dropping by 1.5% annually.

Demand for rental homes has rocketed in the last year as people struggle to get on the property ladder because they cannot raise a deposit or meet lenders' toughened borrowing criteria.

Although rents increased by 3.2% nationally to an average of £741pcm, rates in the South West fell to an average of £638.

The findings come a day after the Money Advice Trust announced that a record 12,000 tenants were struggling with arrears had contacted its national debtline this year - the biggest number in its 26-year history.

Council to challenge housing plans near Cornish village

A parish council has been granted the right to mount a High Court challenge to plans for a controversial housing development near a quiet Cornish village.

Lanner Parish Council says the 25-home affordable housing development on land close to the village, near Redruth, goes against published planning policy.

"It is not for me to decide whether, in the end, it succeeds, but it is clearly arguable that there has been a failure to appreciate that this is outside the policy and thus there would be a positive requirement to explain why, in those circumstances, notwithstanding it is contrary to the policy, it is appropriate to grant permission.

– Mr Justice Collins

The judicial review challenge is likely to go before the High Court in the autumn.

Plymouth residents share memories as estate is rebuilt

Residents old and new from Plymouth's North Prospect Estate have been sharing their memories of living there. The reunion comes as much of the estate is being rebuilt in a ten year regeneration programme.

Residents reunite as North Prospect Estate rebuilt Credit: ITV Westcountry

Many of the streets now resemble a ghost town as more and more residents have been relocated ahead of demolition.

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