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London Rental Opportunity of the Week: Literally Just a Mattress in a Cupboard Under Some Stairs

Live out your Harry Potter fantasies for a cool £500 a month, plus bills.

by Joel Golby
30 September 2015, 11:39am

(Seriously. Photo via Alex Lomax.)

UPDATE: Yeah, this one probably isn't real.

Every week or so an advert for a London rental property appears that plumbs new depths of bad bastardry. Rent a bunkbed above a wardrobe, that sort of thing. Pay £1,500-a-month to sleep in someone's shed. They got so difficult to comprehend that we decided to start cataloguing them.

What Is It? A bed under a staircase, although to be honest "bed" is a push, because there's no frame, and I'm not even sure that's a legitimate mattress, in fact I think it might very well be two large sofa cushions with a sheet tossed over them;
Where Is It? In Clapham, London's Australian outpost/"fuckwit caliphate";
What Is There to Do Locally? Pray for a swift and merciful death, I would imagine;
Alright, How Much Are They Asking? £500 per month! Plus £60 bills!

Exclusive pictures, here, of Saddam Hussein's hideout while he wa—hold on, no, my mistake, this is a legitimate rental opportunity in Clapham, southwest London. And it's £500 a month, the rental opportunity. For what is a literal cupboard-shaped torture dungeon cheered up by a perky children's single duvet set from IKEA.

Like, look:

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Here's the blurb from the advert in question, which Twitter dot com user @alex_lomax went and visited today: "We are looking for a friendly, open-minded and outgoing person to join our houseshare in a great period house in Clapham. We're a good bunch and like to chill out a lot together – not really looking for somebody that just wants to stay in their room. Room comes with a bed. Bills to be shared – approx. £60 per month each."

Two things, from that:

i. Have to question the legitimacy of your claim to be "a good bunch" when you blithely seem to be charging someone to live under your stairs like some twisted and mangled evil twin, feeding on crusts and rat bones, their eyes bulging and accustomed to the dark, their hair lank and thin. Like, I don't even think of myself as an especially good person, but if I had to have someone living under my stairs – if I were shielding them from Nazi oppression, for example – I would at least not hang my fucking coats up in their already tiny bedroom;

ii. "Not really looking for somebody that just wants to stay in their room". Good that the room is a hellscape that literally no human could sanely stay in then, isn't it? Because consider the roommates compiling that advert. "We need someone who is happy to spend £500 a month renting what is essentially a torture chamber," they are saying, "but we also need them to be perky and outgoing." Another housemate chips in: "And tell them it's sixty fucking quid for the bills, as well. I know we're not offering them a window or a human rights-compliant amount of living space, but they're paying their fair share of the WiFi. I'm not fucking propping anyone up with my money."

Often, I blame the landlords for this sort of thing – because landlords, recall please, are lower than cockroaches on the earth-dwelling scum scale – but I'm convinced that this time the occupants of Sisters Avenue are also complicit in this scheme. If you live in the house that has a bed under the stairs, just know that you are one of history's greatest monsters. Seriously: Friztl's sex basement legitimately had more living space than this.

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Bomb London to the fucking ground and build a pyre in the middle for the bodies of the landlords, and let us dance around the fire as they burn, as their jeans-and-sheux combinations go up in acrid smoke, until the deposits they have been withholding from us all flop from their pockets to the ground, until the little disposable cameras they all carry to document unavoidable wear and tear which they interpret as "methodical property damage" explode on their chests, until we can bake their skulls down and drink fresh red wine from the eyeholes. Fuck landlords and fuck London, basically.

DISCLAIMER: Unless, of course, Twitter dot com user @alex_lomax is doing this to hoax the shit out of us and everyone else who runs the 'London – isn't it bad?' feature, in which case: kudos on the piss-taking.

@joelgolby

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