课程 32

Safe as houses

In today’s programme we will be discussing issues around housing in different cultures.

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    练习题 1

练习题 1

Safe as houses

Look at the Session Vocabulary – make sure you know what these words and phrases mean:

  • (to be) as safe as houses
  • rent
  • landlord

Quiz

What percentage of their salary does the average London tenant spend on rent?

a. almost 30 %
b. almost 40%
c. almost 50%

Listen to the audio and take the quiz.

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Caalii
Yooyyaa! Gara English Together kan mata duree tibbanaa irratti mari’annuufi qooqa ittiin dubbachuun si barbaachisu siif qoodnutti baga nagaan dhufte. Ani Caaliidha. Akkasumas Toomiifi Saam na waliin jiru.

Tom
Hi everybody, I’m Tom. Welcome to today’s episode of English Together.

Sam
Hello, I’m Sam.

Caalii
You’re in a good mood today Sam!

Sam
Today’s payday! I just got paid!

Caalii
Oh nice! Are you going to spend it on anything special?

Sam
No, I like to keep my money in the bank, where it’s as safe as houses!

Caalii

What? Are you going to buy a house?

Tom
No! If something is as safe as houses, it means that it’s very secure or stable. It comes from the British belief that buying a house is one of the best investments you can make.

Sam
You’d be lucky! It’s so difficult to buy houses here! Most people struggle to pay their rent.

Caalii
Oh! ‘Rent’ jechuun Kiraa dha. Otuma dubbannuu, gaafiin har’aa kunooti: Namoonni Landan keessa mana kireeffatan mindaasaaniirraa dhibbantaa meeqa kiraa manaatiif oolchu?
a) Hanga %30
b) Hanga %40
c) Hanga %50

Tom
Well, I won’t spoil the answer for our listeners, but I will say that rental costs in London are ridiculous!

Sam

The thing is, there’s so much demand for rented property in London that landlords can afford to charge whatever they want!

Caalii
Yes! ‘Property’ jechuun qabeenya and ‘landlord’ jechuun abbaa qabeenyaati. Odeessa har’aa, BBC Radio 4’s You and Yours, irraa argame kan jiraattonni Landan malawwan kiraa olaanaa ta’e ofirraa hambisuurratti mari’atan haacaqasnu .

Presenter
:
In London, a growing number of people are saving money on their rent by living as caretakers in empty buildings. They call these people property guardians and there are 7,000 of them in the UK now, most of them in the capital. The idea came from the Netherlands, and it really took off in London after the financial crash. Thirty companies manage property guardian services there. But new research from York University for the London Assembly has found that property guardians are sometimes in substandard housing with very few rights. Rex Deuce is a property guardian in London.

Rex:
I became a property guardian because I’d been living in private renting for about 4 years in London and I was able to get cheaper space and a larger space as a guardian. I’ve lived in about eight or nine properties, and on average they range from about six months, nine months to about eighteen months. I am currently living in a very run-down pub, I’m about to move out, in fact, in a week and a half. It’s full of holes. It leaks. When it snows outside it’s as cold inside as outside, so it’s probably the worst-condition building I’ve ever lived in.

Tom
What a horrible living situation!

Sam
Well, if you can’t rent cheaply, why not take care of someone else’s property for a while?

Tom
I think you’re missing the point here, Sam. These people are having to pay too much money to live in poor-quality accommodation. They are being exploited because the housing market in London is too crowded!

Caalii
‘Exploited’ jechuun qisaasamuu dha. Well, nobody is forcing them, I suppose.

Sam
Yes, the man in the interview agreed to live there. What’s exploitative about that?

Caalii
Mataduree sanarratti, deebiin gaafii har’aa kunooti. Deebiinsaa C dha. Jiraataan Landan tokko giddugaleessatti mindaasaarraa %49 kiraa manaaf baasii godhaa jechuudha.

Tom
49% of your salary on rent! That’s ridiculous! I don’t think it’s fair that landlords are able to extort all this money out of people just because they own a few houses! I think this is something that we need to do something about!

Sam
I think you need to calm down, Tom. There are lots of benefits to life in London, rent’s just something you have to put up with.

Caalii
‘To put up with’ or ‘tolarate’, jechuun obsuu ykn danda’uudha. Yes, you shouldn’t get so upset over something you can’t control. People here put up with lots of things.

Tom
Well, I suppose your money is ‘safe as houses’ if you’re a landlord. I still don’t think it’s fair that their high rent is something we have to put up with, though…

Sam
Tom, you know the other expression that uses ‘put up’?

Tom
No…

Sam
Put up, or shut up!

Tom
Hey...!

Caalii
Haha, Toom, yeroo mara komachuukee kana dhaabi maaloo! Atoo maal yaada? Yaadnikee maal akka ta’e nubeeksiisuuf nu quunnami.
Turtii waliin qabaanneef galatoomi; barnoota dabalataa English Together’n torban ittaanu walitti deebina. Nagaatti! Bye!

 

Meaning & Use

Can you complete the table with the missing words? Use the sentences below, taken from the transcript, to help you.

Word Forms

Noun  Verb  Adjective
  invest          invested
rent              (x2)
exploitation    
extortion   extortionate

It comes from the British belief that buying a house is one of the best investments you can make.

I will say that rental costs in London are ridiculous!


There’s so much demand for rented property in London that landlords can afford to charge whatever they want!


If you can’t rent cheaply, why not take care of someone else’s property for a while?


They are being exploited because the housing market in London is too crowded!


Yes, the man in the interview agreed to live there. What’s exploitative about that?


I don’t think it’s fair that landlords are able to extort all this money out of people just because they own a few houses!

Safe as houses

3 Questions

Choose the correct answer.
Deebii sirrii ta’e fili.

祝贺你完成了测验!
Excellent! 太棒了! Bad luck! 加分:
x / y

Over to you!

Do you think property is too expensive or extortionate? Would you want to be a ‘caretaker’ to save money on your rent? Tell us on our Facebook group.

Join us for our next episode of English Together when we will learn more useful language and practise your listening skills.
English Together kan qooqa barbaachisoo keessatti barattuufi dandeettii waa caqasuukee ittiin shaakaltutti, sagantaa keenya ittaanuun walitti haadeebinu.

本课词汇

  • (to be) as safe as houses
    nageenya amansiisa qabaachuuf

    to make an investment 
    hojii uumuuf

    caretaker / take care of
    kunuunsituu/ kunuunsuu

    rent
    kiraa

    landlord
    Abbaa qabeenyaa manaa

    to exploit
    qisaasuu

    to extort
    humnaan irra fudhachuu

    to put up with
    obsuu ykn danda’uu