An empty property is a wasted resource both for the owner of the property and those in need of housing.
Properties which are left vacant for extended periods of time can cause problems for the local environment, the surrounding community and reduce the value of neighbouring homes.
What we can do to help
The Council offers FREE help and advice to owners of empty properties and will assist owners in bringing the property back into use. For an informal chat please call our Empty Homes Officer on 01453 754449.
Owners of empty homes are entitled to VAT relief on certain renovation costs associated with bringing a property back into use. If a property has been empty for 2 years or more the standard rate of VAT is reduced down to 5% on renovations. Please contact the Empty Homes Officer if you require a letter to state how long the property has been unoccupied. There are also other exemptions with regard to VAT, such as properties which are Listed. It is worth looking on the HMRC website to find out more.
Report an Empty Property
If you are concerned or aware of an empty property please contact us. An Empty Homes Officer will investigate the property and make every effort to contact the owner with the aim of bringing the property back into use.
- Empty homes leaflet - PDF
There is a variety of legislation that can be used to address particular problems that are being caused by an empty property. Empty Dwelling Management Orders (EDMOs) were introduced in the Housing Act 2004 and came into force in April 2006. If an owner refuses all voluntary options to bring the property back into use, EDMOs maybe considered. The EDMO allows Councils to take over the management of empty residential properties with a view to agreeing with owners a plan to bring the property back into occupation. Under the Law of Property Act 1925 the Council is given the power to Enforced the Sale of empty properties in order to release the money tied up in the value of the property to pay for works that the Council has undertaken. Ultimately the Council has the power to use a Compulsory Purchase Order.
Gloucestershire Empty Property Framework 2008
This report focuses on tackling the issue of empty homes at a countywide level, bringing together information and actions from existing strategies within Gloucestershire to produce an effective coordinated approach to tackling the problems of empty homes.