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Getting your empty home back into use

There is a strong business case for bringing an empty home back into use considering the cost of maintaining a property, with mortgage repayments, insurance, council tax, securing a property. Properties that have been unoccupied for more than 2 years are also subject to an additional 100% Council Tax meaning the charge would be 200%.

Improve the property

Always ensure reputable tradespeople carry out the work as they will most likely belong to a trade body, have current public liability insurance, and not ask for unusual payment methods. The Derbyshire County Council 'Trusted Trader' provide contractor details.

Certain types of work require building regulations approval or planning permission  - find out more here

Assistance with disabled facilities adaptations is available to allow residents to remain living independently in their homes.  

The Home Repairs Assistance grant is available to help people bring an empty property back into use.

VAT discounts may be available for renovating empty homes.

Let the property to tenants

Renting out a property can be a good investment, but being a landlord involves a number of responsibilities.

Our housing advice service and commissioned service providers Adullam can offer tenant finding services. Potential tenants can access pre tenancy training and tenancy support to help ensure tenancy success.

The local authority is committed to homelessness prevention and in partnership has commissioned a Call B4 You Serve [2MB] service specifically for landlords. This service is available to help and assist landlords resolve difficulties without needing  to serve notice.

Estate agencies can also offer tenant finder services, property management, property maintenance and EPCs. It is now a legal requirement for all letting agents and property managers in England to belong to a Government approved redress scheme.

Landlord insurance can offer added protection. Most policies offer buildings insurance and property owners' liability insurance, and you can also add protection against accidental damage, loss of rent, re-homing tenants in the instance of a flood or a fire and more. 

Sell the property

A property can be sold privately or through estate agents.

Some social housing providers may be interested in buying your property, particularly if it's on an estate that they manage.  

Useful Links

Local Authorities in Kent have developed a useful website No Use Empty which provides a wide range of information

Government advice guide about dealing with squatters

Buying an empty home

If you have seen an empty home that you are interested in buying, find out who the owner is by carrying out a 'Find a property' search on the Land Registry website.