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Fewer empty homes in Waveney

PUBLISHED: 20:01 19 January 2010 | UPDATED: 16:00 06 July 2010

Hayley Mace

Grants to pay for repair work and closer contact with landlords have helped to slash the number of empty homes in Waveney.

Grants to pay for repair work and closer contact with landlords have helped to slash the number of empty homes in Waveney.

Waveney District Council has been working to target the owners of empty properties in a bid to get them back into use as homes to meet the area's housing needs.

A recent campaign to raise awareness of the problems and possibilities available for those who own the properties has led to a dramatic reduction in the number of vacant properties, which has fallen by nearly one third.

The council recently contacted the owners of 120 empty properties in the district and after advice from the council's housing team and, in some cases, empty property grants to pay for repair and redecoration work, 41 homes have been made available, smashing the council's target of 20 homes in the current financial year.

Jason Hall, the council's principal private sector housing officer, said: "There are many reasons why homes remain empty, none of which is unique to Waveney. They range from landlords who have tired of issues with tenants to relatives not wishing to have strangers in an inherited family home, or properties tied up in probate.

"Our efforts have really worked, prompting those with empty properties to use them for their own benefit, and that of the community."

A council spokesman said a further 10 owners had shown an interest in an empty property grant to help fund repairs and that officers would work with them in the new financial year.

To report an empty home, contact the council on 01502 523119 or email emptyhomes@waveney.gov.uk.

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