If you had properties lying empty, would you be interested in a scheme that encourages you to restore them back to residential use? You may be interested to know that you can apply for an Empty Homes Grant, as an incentive to fill such empty homes.
Specifically in the London borough of Barnet, private landlords can receive up to £25,500 to help with renovation or conversion.
Currently, you would be looking at receiving around £15,300 for a one bedroom property, or £20,400 for one with two bedrooms. For a property with three bedrooms or more, you would be looking at £25,500. This is all provided that there is an agreement to rent them out, once completed.
Councillor Gabriel Rozenberg, chairman of the Barnet Council Housing Committee, has commented: “Barnet has hundreds of vulnerable families who are looking for a long-term home. When we face such an extreme supply shortage, it’s vital that any empty homes are brought back into use as quickly as possible.
“Empty Homes Grants give landlords great incentives to help out Barnet’s social housing tenants. Having homes occupied, means a reduction in the risk of vandalism, squatting or burglary. It’s a win-win.”
Understandably, the council is eager to sort out the issue of properties lying empty, when there are plenty looking for somewhere to live. In an attempt to encourage more private landlords to get involved, they can currently claim an extra £2,500 on top of the initial grant, as long as applications are submitted by 30th November.
According to data from the charity Empty Homes, there are currently over 200,000 homes that have been empty for more than six months in England, which has seen an increase of over 5,000, recorded by local authorities in the year to October 2017.
If you do own properties that are currently awaiting tenants, or you do decide to undergo renovations or a conversion, we would like to remind you to make sure that you have the right building insurance. Some policies become invalid, if the property is unoccupied. However, there are covers available, such as Just Landlords’ Unoccupied Property Insurance, which will cater for a whole host of scenarios.