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Home > Housing > Empty Homes > Report Empty Homes

Report Empty Homes


Making the best use of existing homes is one of our key objectives.

There is a shortage of residential accommodation available as housing demand outstrips housing supply quite significantly. It is essential to ensure that empty homes do not remain empty unnecessarily and fall into misuse and dereliction.

Report an empty home

We can offer support and assistance to empty home owners to help them bring their property back in to use, or we can use enforcement action to bring the properties in to use.

Why properties become or remain empty

In most cases this is because the owners need assistance, support, information, or encouragement to help return empty homes to use. Although there are numerous other reasons that properties remain empty.

These reasons include, but are not limited to:

  • Financial implications
  • Requires renovation and/or building work
  • Reluctance to let/sell
  • Health issues
  • Probate, estate or legal ownership issues
  • Lack of awareness of support options

The reasons can vary in severity. It is important, therefore, that we are able to give the appropriate level of support to those who need it.

Impact of an empty home

Each empty home denies a household somewhere to live and returning an empty home to use has social, environmental and financial benefits. If left empty, properties can:

  • Fall into disrepair, or become ruinous or dilapidated
  • Attract vandalism, antisocial behaviour and crime
  • Cause damage to adjacent properties, and possibly health issues for neighbours through lack of maintenance
  • Pose a threat to safety, particularly to young children
  • Reduce the value of the surrounding area as well as themselves

Empty homes can create a great deal of problems not only for the owners but for those situated in the surrounding areas.

Benefits of bringing an empty home back into use

Bringing an empty home back into use has a number of benefits.

These benefits include:

  • Generating potential income for the owner, and increasing property value
  • Reducing the risk of crime and vandalism for the property, and the local area
  • Providing accommodation for others to use
  • Contributing to the regeneration of an area, increasing spending in the local economy, and helping to protect the value of the surrounding area

How we can help

We can offer a range of services to give the best support and advice possible to empty homes owners and neighbours.

We can:

  • Offer informal advice and assistance
  • Offer financial assistance to owners
  • Offer to buy empty homes from the owners
  • Offer to refer to town hall lettings the councils not for profit letting agent
  • Offer to find suitable companies to do works for owners

In some circumstances we may consider to use enforcement action these could be:

  • Deal with dangerous, derelict, and ruinous buildings through enforcement notices
  • Serve improvement notices in order to remove hazards
  • Take over the management of the property by using an empty dwelling management order or EDMO
  • Undertake Compulsory Purchase Orders (CPO) when it is in the public interest, as a last resort

We are eager to help empty home owners as much as possible, whilst avoiding enforcement actions.

Contact us

Contact our Private Sector Housing Team for advice and support