Empty properties

How you can report an empty property and what we're doing to address them.


Why are empty homes a problem and what can the Council do?

Empty properties are a wasted resource and a drain on our economy. Worst of all they are a threat to our neighbourhoods and can cause a spiral of decline. Good places to live can become eyesores to people living in the local community if they are left empty and neglected.

If you wish to report an empty property that is either insecure, has an accumulation of rubbish or is affecting the amenity of the area, then please send us an email.

Where empty homes have accrued debts, the council may carry out an enforced sale procedure. Although not entered into without exhausting all other avenues with owners, ultimately the Council can carry out a compulsory purchase order (CPO) on an empty home.

What about enforced sale?

Enforced sale is a power available to the Council under the Law of Property Act (1925). Through this process we can bring about the sale of empty privately owned properties if the owner has debts owing to us and the debts have been land charged. This serves two purposes; the recovery of public money and to increase the likelihood of development and reoccupation following a sale. The powers available are very similar to those used by banks in repossessions. We will not seek enforced sale unless the debts owed to the Council are greater than £1000. Please find a copy of our enforced sale procedure in the downloads section. 

Are you interested in attempting to buy and empty home? Let us help

Ownership of land in property is held centrally by HM Land Registry as a public record. If you are unable to locate the owner or do not have any response to correspondence you have sent, please send us an email:housing.standards@doncaster.gov.uk

We will need your full contact details, the address of the property you are interested in purchasing and the steps you have taken to contact the owner. We can contact the owner on your behalf and explain you wish to enter into a dialogue. For us to act, we will need a statement saying that you consent for us to pass on your contact details to the property owner with a view to them contacting you direct. If we can trace ownership we will pass on your details.

(Note: Paragraph 18A of schedule 2 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 permits a local authority to use prescribed information it has obtained in carrying out its Council Tax functions for the purpose of taking steps to bring vacant dwellings back into use. )

Is there any help to bring empty homes back in to use?

We are working with St Leger Homes to help bring back into use as many empty residential properties as we can to provide much-needed homes for local families.

If you own an empty property, there are a number of ways in which we might be able to help you bring it back into use:

Empty Property Matching Service

St Leger Homes are currently developing a scheme which aims to match empty homeowners, who would like to sell their property, with people who want to buy an empty home. To be eligible for the scheme, the property must have been registered as empty with Council Tax for at least 6 consecutive months. The only role St Leger will play is to facilitate communication between owners of empty property and potential developers. Please visit the St Leger Homes website for further details.  

Empty Homes Loan Scheme

St Leger Homes ‘Empty homes loan scheme’ aims to provide financial assistance for owners that require support to refurbish their empty property in order to bring it back into use.  The amount of loan available is dependent upon individual circumstances but can range from £5,000 to £30,000.  Once refurbished, the property can be either sold or let through our St Leger Lettings service.  For more information and details of how to apply, please contact St Leger Homes using the contact details below. 

Empty Property Grants

Dependent on available funding, grants of up to £12,000 per owner may be available in limited cases to help improve an empty property so it can be brought into use.

To qualify, the property must have been owned for a minimum of 12 months, empty for at least 6 months and must be re-let under a minimum 5 year management agreement with St Leger Lettings.

For more information, including the full range of terms and conditions, please contact St Leger Homes using the details below.  

Empty Property Acquisitions

Working in partnership with Doncaster Council, St Leger Homes have limited funding available to purchase and improve empty homes so that they can be re-let.

The property must have been empty for at least 6 months and will be subject to meeting further qualifying criteria in terms of need / area.  For more information, please contact St Leger Homes using the details below.  

Larger Properties

St Leger Homes have limited funding to purchase larger type properties (4 bed +). Initial consideration would be given to former council properties in areas of housing need and where we have a high concentration of existing stock.

For more information, please contact us using the details below.

To contact St Leger Homes regarding the above initiatives

Email emptyproperties@stlegerhomes.co.uk

Tel: 01302 736922

Empty property matching service

St Leger Homes are currently developing a scheme which aims to match empty homeowners, who would like to sell their property, with people who want to buy an empty home. 

If this is something that may be of interest to you, please visit the St Leger Homes website to find out more and register. 

Information about bringing empty properties back into use

Action on Empty Homes is an independent charity, and provides useful information about bringing empty homes back into use.
You can also find their latest guide to empty homes data here.





Last updated: 04 December 2020 09:41:24