1,371 homes standing empty in Manchester
A recent news story shares that 1,371 homes are empty in Manchester with 94 that have been empty for over 10 years!
The figures, released by University College London, have generated discontent from campaigners who feel that these figures lean towards being an ’empty housing scandal’.
Rightly so, it the current client of affordable housing shortages, Manchester City Council have announced higher taxation rates for empty property owners in hope that this will encourage them being put to use. A 100% premium is being charged annually on property that have been empty for more than two years with a 200% premium on property that have been empty for over 5 years. Similar procedures are in place in Tameside.
“Manchester City Council has also introduced an Empty Homes Cluster Plan, in which the council buys empty homes in North and east Manchester with a view to repairing and reselling the properties to the owner or first time buyer.” Manchester Evening News website.
The council have been acting in that 62 vacant homes were bought locally to include renovation projects. Reasons for property to be standing empty include negative equity, lengthy probate issues and people unsure of what to do with inherited property and especially those which are in a bad state.
Councillor Suzanne Richards, responsible for housing and regeneration at Manchester City Council was quoted as saying: “Manchester City Council has prioritised bringing empty homes back into use and has been using every tool at our disposal to do this.”
Chris Bailey, Campaign Manager from charity Action on Empty Homes was quoted as saying: “It is time we all woke up to the fact that around one in every 30 homes in England has no residents at a time of national housing crisis.“