On a personal note: I was flat hunting yesterday and there was one property that looked okay so we got the estate agent to tell us more about it. “Yeah it’s good,” he said, “it’s fine […pause] it’s got two bedrooms or you could use one as a study, and there’s a kitchen with plenty of space for a proper table and chairs, plenty of light, newly refurbished last year, dishwasher, washer-dryer, all nearly new, gas central heating, bills included” (etc etc..).

We went and looked at it with him and everything was like he’d described, maybe nicer, more clean than I’d imagined, and on a quiet road that looked like it’d be pretty safe even at night time. It was really cheap so we asked him what was the catch. He looked a bit shifty and he said “well it’s just that it’s fake”. The walls and everything were fine and normal, he said, and all the foundations and the brickwork, and the electrics were all proper, put in by trained people, and the fixtures and fittings etc, it was all safe and completely legal and everything, like a real house, it’s just that this one’s fake so as long as we’re okay with that there shouldn’t be a problem. When I went home I googled the property manager people and they look completely above board, the other properties he owns are real, it’s just he’s also got this fake one and the estate agent said as long as the tenants are clear about it, he doesn’t think there’s anything wrong with renting it, but he’s put the price down just in case to kind of compensate and make it fair.

We can’t see any real difference it would make to our daily lives so we’ve signed the lease, which is six months in the first instance, and we’ll see how it goes. We haven’t decided if we’re going to tell anyone (though I suppose if they read this they’ll find out), because they might think it’s a bit weird, but really I don’t think it’ll make any difference to us at all.

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