Saturday, June 24, 2006

Sleeping rough in East Belfast to get on the property ladder

The Ballyhackamore branch of MCW Residential estate agents in East Belfast is releasing some new properties first thing on Monday morning: the first four apartments in the new Elm Court development on the Beersbridge Road.

The first couple started the queue on Thursday, pitching their tent at the side of the MCW office. Two lads sitting on deck chairs joined next. Third in the queue joined after getting a phone call to tell them that a queue had started.

Some folk further back in the queue look like they've brought enough with them ready to move in and furnish their apartment immediately! A 28" widescreen TV sits under their garden gazebo. No kitchen sink though.

So four apartments ... but there are more than four sets of people in the queue? They explained that those who don't get an apartment straight away will be listed to get first refusal on the next ones to be released later this year, without having to queue again.

The one bedroom apartments are going for £107,950; two bedrooms will set you back £129,950. So is an apartment worth 96 hours wait in the cold?

No doubt the queuers will all be the best of friends and tell their tale for years to come.


David Todd said...

looks like this is the weekend for it

Alan in Belfast (Alan Meban) said...

As I wandered past this morning with the pram, there were sleepy heads trying to squeeze out every last minute of kip that they could. And the local stores and garage were doing good trade for breakfast.

John Self said...

I saw these folk at the weekend. I can't help thinking that even if I was homeless and they were offering a flat for a fiver, I would resist the temptation to camp out outside The Hot Spot and Elizabeth's Cake Shop. There's something profoundly undignified about it: a bit like those people in shopping centre car parks who hover with their indicator on, waiting for someone to offload their shopping, replace the trolley and drive off so they can fill the space. Have some goddamn pride, people! (Or, as this is most often seen outside M&S in Forestside, park in the further car park where there are always spaces and get some exercise...)