Wakefield Council backs Empty Homes Week

15/10/2018, PR8895

​Wakefield Council is backing Empty Homes Week (October 15 – 20) by reminding residents of the help it offers to bring properties back into use.

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​The service helps individuals who are not using a home they own, for reasons such as inheriting a property, a lack of funds to renovate and awaiting probate and are unclear of what to do next.

The Council provides advice to people on their options, including selling disused properties, renting them out, finding buyers, making repairs and applying for grants.

Government figures show that over the last five years the number of empty homes in the Wakefield district has reduced by 4.2% overall and long-term empty homes by 18.6%.  Since April 2018 the Council has provided support to over 100 owners to help bring their empty property back into use.

Cllr Denise Jeffery
Cllr Denise Jeffery

​Cllr Denise Jeffery, Wakefield Council's Cabinet Member for Economic Growth and Regeneration, said: "With demand for housing increasing it is important that this issue is being tackled. The figures show that the work we do is making a difference across our district and is helping turn empty properties into much-need homes for single people, couples and families."

Communities are also benefiting from the service as if a home is unoccupied this can cause problems, leading to issues such as fly-tipping in neglected gardens and damage to neighbouring properties through leaky gutters and drains.

The Council will always work with owners to try and resolve issues, but will, if problems do continue, take formal action requiring owners to carry our repairs to prevent the property from deteriorating.

Owners can get financial support to repair and bring their empty property back into use through an interest-free loan from Leeds City Credit Union of up to £5,000.

Anyone who owns an empty house and would like support, or wants to report an empty house that is causing a problem, can get advice by calling 01924 306665 or by emailing strategichousing@wakefield.gov.uk

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