Financial crisis releases lots of yuppie flats to squat

Mark mark at
Tue Oct 7 14:27:04 BST 2008

thanks to Martin Slavin from Games Monitor for pointing this story out>

Requiem for a dream home
by Jonathan Ford
The FT
Fri October 3 2008


The doorway looks like the entrance to a prison cell: an unpainted steel
hatch with a giant padlock hanging from it. The estate agent unlocks it
and heaves the cover open, revealing a normal front door behind. "You need
it in these flats to stop people just breaking in and smashing the whole
place up", she says.

Amy is showing me round a repossessed two-bedroom flat on the fourth floor
of a large modern block in east London. Completed in 2006, Hill House is
part of the Pinnacles, a development built and sold by the housebuilder
Persimmon as a development for young professionals working in London's
financial district. You can see the towers of Canary Wharf from the
balcony, which overlooks a broad grey stretch of the Thames. But the young
professionals didn't show up, and 82 of the 84 flats in this block have
now been repossessed. The whole place feels eerily empty, its corridors
deserted and echoing. Many of the doors we pass have similar metal shields
over them, signifying other repossessions.

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