Welcome to this year's final festive update from Action on Empty Homes. In this edition we highlight new polling commissioned from ComRes. This shows cross-party support from MPs for Government to back local authorities with more funding and new powers to bring more empty homes back into use.
As always we welcome your feedback on any or all of the stories in this newsletter.
Hope that you all have a good festive period.
New poll shows huge parliamentary support for action on empty homes
New ComRes polling of MPs commissioned by Action on Empty Homes shows huge cross-party parliamentary support for action on empty homes
- 86% of MPs polled agree that Government should place a higher priority on tackling empty homes.
- Over 80% also supported targeted funding for local authorities charities and local organisations to buy, lease or refurbish empty homes.
- 72% rank action to bring England’s 216,000 plus long-term empty homes back into use as one of their highest two priorities for combatting the current housing crisis.
Lord Best, Chair of the national Coalition for Community Investment, said:
‘This poll makes it clear that MPs across the House of Commons want central and local government to take urgent action at this scandalous waste of housing. The time for action on empty homes is now’
You can read the full press release with further details, here
'Ghost homes' face £3,000-plus council tax
The London Evening Standard reported on 14 December that Westminster council has become the first in London to double the council tax for long-term empty properties in an effort to clamp down on "ghost homes”. It means homeowners in Mayfair and Knightsbridge could see bills rise to more than £3,330 a year. Far be it from us to suggest that this isn’t very much given their average values!
Charity wins award for turning empty houses into homes for single mothers
Little Ones, based in Tokyo, was named a World Habitat Award winner last week for converting vacant and abandoned houses into homes for single mothers at subsidised rates. The non-profit has helped more than 300 single mothers find a home since its inception in 2008. The awards, supported by U.N. Habitat, are presented to 10 innovative housing projects every year. You can read more here
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