One million homes in Britain are empty
Wednesday 21 October 2009
The number of UK homes standing empty has hit one million, the highest ever level, a charity has revealed. The Empty Homes Agency reported that more than one in 20 properties have been unoccupied for six months or more, a figure described as "shocking" by homelessness charities.
"More money needs to be made available to give local authorities the manpower to make contact with the owners of empty properties to start getting these homes back into use," said Kay Boycott, Shelter's director of policy and campaigns.
"Bringing empty homes back into use is only part of the solution to Britain's housing problems. There is no substitute for the Government building the urgently needed new affordable housing that the country needs," she added.
Ms Boycott highlighted the difference between long- and short-term empty homes, adding that there are around 300,000 long-term empty homes. "Local authorities have the legal powers to bring long-term empty homes back into use, but don't have the resources to enforce these powers," she said.
The North-west and South-east of England as well as Yorkshire, Scotland and Northern Ireland are the worst-affected areas, and some local authorities have started schemes to rent out properties to people on their social housing waiting lists.
Exeter council is trying to attract landlords to let their homes out for at least five years to some of the 6,000 people currently on its list. It is offering to provide maintenance, among other services, in return for a small management fee. The landlord is also guaranteed a rent income.
The Empty Homes Agency collected data from councils and land registries and other charities to produce the figure, which excludes holiday homes.
- 2 Moscow voted the world's unfriendliest city
- 3 The excuses your boss is most likely to believe when you call in sick
- 4 I'm pansexual – here are the five biggest misconceptions about my sexuality
- 5 More than 11,000 Icelanders offer to house Syrian refugees to help European crisis
The one chart that shows how George Osborne is almost certainly going to be our next Prime Minister
The excuses your boss is most likely to believe when you call in sick
Bono's group has made more money from Facebook investment than from all his music
Three-year-old ultra-Orthodox Jewish children told 'the non-Jews' are 'evil' in worksheet produced by London school
Wikipedia rocked by 'rogue editors' blackmail scam targeting small businesses and celebrities
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don’t change Europe’s attitude to refugees, what will?
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
Theresa May says migrants should be banned from entering the UK unless they have jobs lined up
£40000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT support company has a n...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A works engineer is required in a progressive ...
£21000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client is seeking someone w...