British PM rents out his Notting Hill homeAugust 21st, 2010 - 9:11 am ICT by IANS
London, Aug 21 (IANS) British Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife Samantha are pocketing up to 6,000 pounds a month by renting out their London home while they live in 10 Downing Street, a media report said Saturday.
In 10 Downing Street and the official country retreat of Chequers, the prime minister has the use of two grace-and favour properties.
But the couple have now decided to cash in on the luxury London property market by letting their 2.7-million pound house in Notting Hill, Daily Mail reported on its website.
The family also has the use of their one million pounds constituency home in Cotswolds, which has benefited from years of taxpayer funding through the Westminster second homes allowance.
Cameron sought to convince the public of his frugality when he became prime minister by announcing that he and his ministers would take a five percent pay cut and a pay freeze for next five years.
That means he is earning 142,500 pounds a year, 7,500 pounds a year less than his predecessor, Gordon Brown.
But the lucrative rental arrangement - which could earn them up to 72,000 pounds a year - means that Cameron will more than make up the shortfall as a result of his move to Downing Street.
At current market rates it would take him only five weeks to make up the difference.
It is thought that Cameron is the first prime minister in recent memory to rent his London home on the open market. Tony Blair sold his, while Gordon Brown, John Major and Margaret Thatcher continued to use theirs.
Earlier this week a new family moved into the four-bedroom Edwardian terraced house in West London that has been empty since the Camerons relocated to Downing Street.
The house was bustling with life as the new tenants, including a blonde woman in her 40s and two daughters, oversaw the arrival of their belongings in a removal van, and new mattresses delivered from John Lewis.
Speaking at the house the woman, who did not wish to give her name, said: “I don’t know the Camerons personally but we are very happy with the house and the move is going fine.
“I am renting it through an agent. Of course I know who lived here before but it doesn’t bother me. It’s no big deal. We have been so busy moving in.”
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Tags: 10 downing street, blonde woman, british prime minister, camerons, cotswolds, country retreat, daily mail, david cameron, frugality, gordon brown, grace and favour, home london, john lewis, john major, london property market, margaret thatcher, minister david, notting hill, tony blair, west london