Have you ever driven past one of those properties where you can hardly see the front door for overgrown garden? Do your friends complain about a property near them where no-one lives and it's becoming an eye-sore? Well there is a way to find out what is going on and even to get your hands on these exciting properties which just need some TLC to turn them back into a fantastic building for sale or rental. In this article I'm going to tell you how…
In the last couple of years there has been progress in managing the huge amount of empty property in the UK and helping investors to help the government to do something about them. There was even a television programme dedicated to empty properties and how they were being taken on by investors and restored to good use. As with all of these issues some council's are better than others. In Peterborough we have a very enlightened Empty Homes Officer who is desperate to work with investors to reduce his list. We have been able to take several off his hands and we've successfully turned them into 6-bed HMO's which I described in an article in some detail here in PIN's July edition.
There are nearly 2,000 empty homes in Peterborough alone, and it's not a very big City. It only has a population of 186,400 (2012 statistic). Imagine this problem in every city and town throughout the UK.
The interesting part though is how those properties are defined.
Total empty = 1,930
Of these 1,038 are still within the first 6 months of being empty and so they are not available to be claimed by the Council.
This rule of being in a position to take possession of a property if it is not lived in for more than 6 months came into being in 2009 and is now in full swing - it's not acceptable just to disappear overseas to work and leave your property to rot. But is this the real reason why properties are empty? Let's look at the statistics.