To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Williams of Trafford on 24 September (HL2300), why empty dwellings in London are not being filled in order to tackle the housing shortage.
17 November 2015
My answer of 24 September showed a trend of decreasing empty dwellings in London; from 42,600 in 2004 to 20,795 in 2014. Local authorities across the country have powers and strong incentives to tackle empty homes. Through the New Homes Bonus they can earn the same financial reward for bringing an empty home back into use as building a new one. Councils may also charge up to 150% council tax for homes empty for over two years.
My Department will continue to encourage London councils to use these empty dwellings for housing.