Vacant Council Owned Property Report

Our latest research has found that across England, local councils are holding onto over 23,000 vacant residential properties, an average of 87 per council, despite the housing crisis currently gripping the nation.

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Recent research by the Telegraph highlighted that there are 200,000+ empty homes across the UK and we have highlighted the quantity owned by the very entities that are tasked with housing people and building new homes to meet expanding demand levels.

We submitted 270 freedom of information requests to London, Metropolitan and District councils asking for the total number of vacant residential properties in their possession including, but not limited to, any council or social housing. So not just those let to council housing tenants, but everything of a residential nature owned by that council.

To provide a transparent analysis of the data, the research not only highlights the worst by the total volume of vacant housing stock but the worst in relation to the local population.

Worst By Political Party

Majority Political Party

% of Total Vacant Properties

Total Vacant Properties

Average

Total Vacant Properties/Population

Labour

70.3%

16,427

200

6.82%

Conservative

24.74%

5,786

37

5.75%

NOC

3.00%

952

48

0.51%

Tamworth

0.40%

111

N/A

0.14%

Liberal Democrats

0.20%

60

9

0.06%

Independent

0.10%

30

10

0.33%

UKIP

0.10%

15

N/A

0.01%

The Best of the Bunch 

It is important to note that of the 270 councils, 108 (40%) do not hold any vacant properties, 73% of which are Conservative majority councils with Labour accounting for just 16% of that number.

No Response 

Of the 270 councils, we fail to get an adequate response from 24. 15 (* within main table) never confirmed receipt of the FOI and so were given the benefit of the doubt. However, eight (** within main table) confirmed receipt of the original request, failed to reply within the allotted time frame and then failed to provide the information during a second round follow up mid-April.

In these instances, the latest Government data for vacant properties within the ‘Local Authority Housing Statistics”, released in March 2017, was used to ascertain a figure.

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