New partnership to return more long-term empty homes into use

Work to bring empty, unused homes back into use is being carried out by a new partnership between Selby District Council, City of York Council and Hunters Property Group.

During Empty Homes Week 2016 - which runs between 28 November and 2 December - the partnership is encouraging local property owners to get free advice and information on bringing a home which has been empty for six months or more back into use.
Hunters Property Group has also joined the initiative with the offer of free market advice and auction valuations for the owners of empty property across York and Selby.  Owners wanting to understand the market for their property, whatever its condition, and how best to realise its value can call the estate agent’s auction office.

The partnership aims to bring empty properties back into use by offering owners advice and information, and in some cases by taking enforcement action.

City of York Council is working with Selby District Council on this.  Since the launch of York’s empty property strategy and action plan there has been a 67 percent reduction in the number of long-term empty homes in the city.  Meanwhile, there are currently 387 long-term empty properties in Selby District, representing around one percent of the total housing stock. 

Cllr Richard Musgrave, Executive Lead for Housing, Leisure, Health and Culture at Selby District Council, said: “Long-term empty homes have a significant impact on the community and they can attract anti-social behaviour, which is distressing for neighbours. With this partnership we are taking a positive approach to bringing empty homes back into use so please do call us for advice.”

Cllr David Carr, Leader of City of York Council with responsibility for Housing and Safer Neighbourhoods, said: “We understand that the circumstances surrounding empty homes can be complex and may involve legal, family or financial matters, and we can help resolve these.  By helping people bring empty homes into use, they can realise new income streams from rent or capital from sales, while people in need of a home can find one. We’re happy to help this happen in York or Selby.”

John Waterhouse, co-founder, sales director and auctioneer at Hunters, said: “We are very pleased to be working as part of this partnership.  The demand for homes in this area is currently high, the market for properties which are ready to modernise is buoyant, so rather than feeling burdened by the task of renovating or refurbishing an empty property, now could be a good time to put it up for auction. We'll visit and assess empty homes in York or Selby, advise the owner for free and discuss whether it could be, and how it should be auctioned or sold on the open market.”

Contact us for information and advice about bringing an empty home back into use.  You can also speak directly to Hunter’s auction department.