A notice has appeared on the gate to the cricket club nearby. It's offering 71% of a two bedroomed house for £170K. Sounds like bargain for the area, but who owns the other 29%? It reminded me of a story I was listening to on the wireless about an American woman who wanted a house but wasn't earning enough to get a mortgage on her own. She came across an advert offering something similar and followed it up. It turned out it was a house owned by a single man in his late 60s who fallen into hard times through illness. He had no family and the illness prevented him from working in his business with the consequence he had no income. He needed a major operation and the only way he'd raise the money for it was going to be from selling his house. But then where would he live? So his plan was to see if he could find someone to buy the house and agree to let him live there until he died. After all, he had nobody to leave it to. The woman found him to be a very pleasant man albeit quite unwell so she gambled his days were numbered and it was probably her only chance of getting onto the property ladder. A contract was drawn up and the house was sold. They had it converted into separate flats, the man had his operation and returned to fair health. They lived like this for a year or so as really good neighbours. She actually grew to like him a lot. Eventually the woman found herself a partner who moved in with her and then she became pregnant. Although the house was quite large, once it had been divided into two flats, it meant each had just one bedroom, a living area, kitchen and bathroom. Her flat wasn't big enough to share with a growing child but it wasn't going to be easy to sell because the contract stipulated that the old man would be allowed to live there for the rest of his life. She sounded like a very compassionate woman who became torn between really liking the old boy and hoping the day he popped his clogs would arrive sooner than later.