You can access free advice and assistance to bring empty homes back into use.Empty homes cause several problems within neighbourhoods:
- They can attract crime and anti-social behaviour
- They can affect the image of an area
- They can devalue surrounding homes
- They stop people who are homeless or vulnerable from getting a home.
Empty home owners
If you own an empty home, and want free advice about how to bring it back into use, contact the Empty Properties Team.
The team's Technical Officer will arrange to meet you at the property to make an inspection and to discuss the options.
- The property could be reused by the owner, or their relatives or friends
- The owner could rent or lease the property
- The owner can sell the property to another potential owner/occupier, developer or housing association
The council can take legal action against owners of empty homes. When absolutely necessary, we may arrange to take over the management of the property.
Report an empty home
Find out who owns an empty home
Contact the Land Registry (a charge applies):
- Phone: 01253 849849
- Fax: 01253 840001
- Land Registry website
The benefits of bringing empty homes back into use
Owners could benefit from the following:
- If you become a landlord, you can charge rent.
- We can help you to find suitable tenants.
- You can benefit from security against vandalism and squatting.
- We can offer property management advice.
- You will have long term investment potential.
- You may be able to have a rent deposit guarantee, and arrange for housing benefit to be paid direct to you as the owner.
Neighbours of empty homes may benefit from:
- The removal of a local eyesore.
- Improvement of the local area, maybe attracting investment into the area.
- A safer place to live.
Property management services from 'Homes for All'
If you need help letting your property, Homes for All offers a range of management services:
- Initial property inspection including a full inventory and photographs
- Finding a tenant
- Vetting a tenant; previous addresses, references, affordability assessment, visit to the present home, proof of ID and status
- Accompanied viewings, sign ups and full explanation of tenancy conditions
- Advice and assistance regarding welfare benefits including housing benefit; all housing benefit applications are safeguarded and tenants must sign a declaration that if the safeguarding is cancelled, Homes for All will be notified immediately
- A six week new tenant visit and further periodic visits/property inspections
- Routine repair service and out-of-hours/make safe service
- Rent collection, arrears management up to where legal costs will be incurred