Residents of Blaby District are being encouraged to report empty homes in their area in a bid to bring them back into use as part of Empty Homes Week.
After six months of being left empty, properties are classed as a Long Term Empty (LTE.) Over the last two years over 250 LTEs that were previously dormant have been transformed to become homes with the work of officers at Blaby District Council.
Properties become LTEs for many reasons, including family disputes, renovation costs or the death of an owner. Empty homes are at high risk of both deterioration and vandalism the longer they remain unoccupied. Work to give these homes a new lease of life ensures more houses are available, and benefits the local community.
LTEs reported to the Council are assessed and attempts are made to engage the property’s owner. While most only need advice, some enforcement action has been taken to get the houses into use. A loan or grant of up to £10,000 is available for owners who want to bring their home back into liveable condition but may not have the finances to start the project.
Councillor Iain Hewson, Portfolio Holder for Health Improvement, Leisure and Regulatory Services, said: “Reviving empty homes is a national priority and I’m proud that we’ve been able to help so many desperately needed properties become available again.
“We try and work with the owners of properties to bring them back into use, but we will take enforcement action if we need to. Some properties are in very poor condition and it’s unfair on local residents to endure these houses in their area.”
Residents concerned about an empty home, or owners who would like help can visit www.blaby.gov.uk/emptyhomes or call 0116 275 0555 for more information.