Empty properties

London Borough of Redbridge is currently reviewing all properties which are listed as empty. We are simply verifying and updating the occupancy of these properties to ensure our records are up to date and accurate.

You may receive a phone call from us regarding the empty property or a letter with an online form to complete.

To complete the online form

The letter will have details of your pin number, account number and postcode. You will need these details to complete the form.

Please complete the form within 14 days.

If we don’t hear from you we may need to inspect the property.

Complete your Empty Homes Review online

Empty Homes frequently asked questions (FAQs)

 

Empty property initiative

We don’t want to see homes lying empty when there is such high housing demand. 

We have an empty property initiative to help owners to bring their properties back into use and want to encourage residents to report the location of empty homes so we can make them available for people to live in. 

There are a number of reasons why a property can remain empty, the most common ones include:

  • properties awaiting a change of owner
  • owners lack information on options available to bring properties back into use
  • properties left empty because the owner has moved into residential care
  • delays or disputes in the administration of the estate where the owner has died
  • perceived problems with renting the property, owner waiting for an increase in the market value before selling
  • lack of finance to carry out the necessary repairs
  • owners are unaware they own a property or they live elsewhere

 

What should I do if I know the location of an empty property?

Long-term empty properties can be a target for vandals and arsonists and can attract antisocial behaviour. If you have a long term empty property in your street let us know by completing the online form.

Report an empty property

 

If you are the owner of an empty property you can get advice and assistance by contacting our Empty Homes Officer. You can contact them by emailing empty.homes@redbridge.gov.uk

The type of advice and assistance available includes:

  • how to secure your property to prevent squatting
  • deciding whether to owner-occupy, rent out or sell your property
  • leasing your property to the Council
  • how to organise building work and choosing a good builder
  • liaising with Planning and Building Control
  • Council Tax enquiries
  • VAT reductions available when refurbishing long term empty properties
  • getting access to empty homes grants and other low cost private finance options
  • converting properties into shared accommodation, bedsits or flats
  • becoming a private landlord and joining the London Landlord Accreditation Scheme

 

 

Grants are available to help renovate properties that have been empty for more than 6 months. The grants cover up to 50% of the cost of works with the maximum limit dependent on the number of bedrooms. Terms and conditions apply.

If you decide to lease your property to us, it will be used to provide accommodation for homeless families. The appointed managing agent would be responsible for the day to day management issues and you would receive a guaranteed monthly income. 

Email empty.homes@redbridge.gov.uk

 

Where owners are reluctant or unable to bring a property back into use, we may use a number of legal powers to try and get the property renovated and re-occupied.

These powers include:

  • compulsory purchase orders
  • enforced sale
  • empty dwelling management orders

It can be a long and complex process and so we will only take enforcement action where it necessary.  We also have powers available to intervene where an empty property is damaging neighbouring properties, is causing a public health hazard, or if the property has become insecure

 

We receive a large number of requests under the Freedom of Information Act asking for lists of empty properties in Redbridge. We hold through Council Tax records information about empty residential properties. Our policy is not to release this information.

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