Sunday, February 25, 2024

Selby: Efforts on to use vacant houses again

After bringing 23 empty houses back into use, York council is set to help Selby do the same.

York council has tied up with a property firm to help neighbouring Selby in its efforts to use homes standing idle.

Empty properties in York, Selby

Out of York’s total number of 86,000 homes, 122 properties were empty that constitute 0.5 per cent of the total properties – according to council tax records for October/November this year. In Selby, the number of vacant properties stands at 387 – which is 1 per cent of the total number of local properties.

Free advice at Empty Homes Week

The City of York Council, Selby District Council and Hunters Property Group have come together to get rid of the problem. During this week’s Empty Homes Week, they are offering free advice to owners of empty properties on how to reuse their property or sell them.

As York’s council leader Cllr David Carr said, “We understand that the circumstances surrounding empty homes can be complex and may involve legal, family or financial matters, and we can help resolve these.

“We live in a fast-growing city where demand for housing is high. By helping people bring empty homes into use, they can realise new income streams from rent or capital from sales, while people in need of a home can find one.”

Efforts by York council have proved to be successful as the number of long-term empty homes in the city has come down by 67 per cent. The council has advised and given information or resorted to enforcement action in some cases as part of its empty property strategy and action plan.

John Waterhouse of Hunters Property Group said, “The demand for homes in York is currently high, the market for properties which are ready to modernise is buoyant, so rather than feeling burdened by the task of renovating or refurbishing an empty property, now could be a good time to put it up for auction. “We will visit and assess empty homes in York or Selby, advise the owner for free and discuss whether it could be, and how it should be auctioned or sold on the open market.”

Selby council’s housing lead Cllr Richard Musgrave said the partnership was about a positive approach to bring empty homes back into use, and stopping a problem that is harmful for neighbourhoods.

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