There are currently, in the UK, 216,000 houses that have been empty for six months plus, with 11,000 of these properties having been empty for at least a decade. This study has been done by the Lib Dems after looking at the figures from 276 local British councils. Also, 23,000 of these houses have been empty for five years or more.
Here are the five areas with the highest number of empty houses:
- Durham – 6,500
- Leeds – 5,724
- Bradford – 4,144
- Cornwall – 3,273
- Liverpool – 3,093
According to the research, councils aren’t making use of EDMOs (Empty Dwelling Management Orders) which allow them to take over the residential properties that have been empty for over six months.
Out of the 247 councils that had responded to a Freedom of Information request that had been put out, only 18 of them had used this service in the past five years.
So, why haven’t property developers jumped at the chance to purchase some of these abandoned properties over the years? Well, this post by Pure Commercial Finance takes a little look at whether these examples of abandoned properties would provide a good opportunity for them.
Are Abandoned Houses a Good Opportunity for Developers?
Just like anything that doesn’t get looked after properly, properties can degrade over time and become a little worse for wear, especially when councils aren’t utilising EDMOs.
Sometimes, buying an abandoned property could be more hassle than it is worth. Obviously, if it is structurally sound, then it may prove to be more affordable to renovate and stick it back on the market for a little more.
However, if the property needs some huge changes that may cost more than the overall sale of the house, sometimes it is best to seek planning permission. By doing this, developers can tear down the current property and create a building plot. You may be able to put down multiple homes on the same plot of the old home, making it great value for money!
It is always best to talk this through with a property development finance specialist, especially if you’re concerned about whether investing in an abandoned property may be worth your time and money.