My home is like my castle

Lewin, Marrickville tenant
Lewin George, Marrickville tenant

By Lewin George, Marrickville tenant

Home means security for me – this is where I feel safe. My home is like my castle, even though it's one room at the back of my landlord's house. I also like to go out, but I value my privacy when I’m at home. The landlord's dogs are good, they keep watch.

I’ve always worked hard in my employment, but things went bad when I was given the sack for no reason. I also had some health problems at the time, so it wasn’t looking good for me. I then fell behind in my rent and my landlord gave me a one day notice to get out!

So I was panicking, but I went to see Julia at the Inner West Tenants’ Advice and Advocacy Service (IWTAAS). That was the best thing that ever happened! She advised me to apply for Centrelink, and also put me in touch with a charitable organisation which helped me out in the short term. Julia helped me negotiate with the landlord for a rent deduction, and for time to pay the rent arrears. The notice the landlord had given me was illegal, and they also weren’t giving me the receipts they should have been. Finding out my rights was very helpful.

They are good people at IWTAAS at Marrickville Legal Centre. Their help was unbelievably good for me. My home is secured, and now I’m hoping to get back into work soon. In life, I think you have to be positive.