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Highlighting Empty Homes Week

Dorset Council is highlighting the problem of long-term empty properties during Empty Homes Week, 23-29 September, in conjunction with the Empty Homes Network.

Throughout the week the council will be highlighting the issue and showing examples of how homes that have been brought back into use.

Properties can be left vacant for a number of reasons and there are estimated to be around 600 long-term properties of this kind in Dorset.

Housing is in short supply in the county and, for this reason, Dorset Council takes action in a number of ways to help bring them back into use.

The council offers advice, guidance and financial assistance (in the form of loans) to the owners of empty properties to help bring them back into use or sell them.

A leasing scheme is also available where the council manages the property and rents it back to local people in housing need.

Other powers include the use of compulsory purchase and empty dwelling management orders.

Cllr Graham Carr Jones, the council’s Housing Portfolio Holder said: “It’s difficult to understand why some properties are left empty for long periods of time, often getting into a state of disrepair when they could be providing an income to their owner and much needed accommodation to people living in Dorset.

“If you know of a property that has been left empty for a long time, let the council know about it by registering it on the council website.”

The Empty Homes Network is the successor to the National Association of Empty Property Practitioners which was established in May 2001 to support people involved in delivering strategies.

It was launched with the support of government, the Housing Corporation and the Empty Homes Agency.

Opening Doors aims to encourage the construction of 20,000 more homes of all tenures by 2033 across north, south and west Dorset.

Don’t forget to sign the Opening Doors Home Ownership Register for latest details about new homes for sale and rent.