Empty homes

Empty homes matter

Empty properties are a wasted resource, to the owner and to the community as a whole. They cost money to tax and maintain and represent a significant amount of lost rental income. They are often a nuisance which devalues the area.

We want to encourage and help owners and managers to bring them back into use.

  • We can help you obtain substantial VAT reductions.

If your property has been empty for two years or over you will be able to claim a VAT reduction on the cost of returning it to residential use. VAT will be reduced to a rate of 5% instead of the usual 20%. This could save you a great deal of money on the overall building contract sum. Renovation works to properties empty for over 10 years will be zero-rated if you intend to live in the property yourself.

  • We can provide you with documentation that will satisfy HMRC that you are entitled to the discount.

Where units have been vacant and the owner is failing to restore the place to use within a reasonable time then we may start statutory enforcement action to bring the property back into occupation. This might involve: repairs notices, Empty Dwelling Management Orders, enforced sale (where there exists a debt) or compulsory purchase. All the councils in the West London sub-region have an active policy to take one or more of these courses of action if there appear to be no plans to restore houses or flats to residential use.

As of April 2015 LBHF will begin to charge council tax at 150 per centĀ of the usual rate on long-term vacant homes. Councils will be lobbying Government to lift the cap on present upper limit of tax that can be levied on vacant homes. Empty homes will become an ever more expensive drain on your resources.

Allow us to save you money by helping you to bring your property back into use.

Find out about our private sector leasing and letting schemes

phs@lbhf.gov.uk

Fostering event, Thursday 30 March 2017, 10am to 12 noon, Westminster City Hall SW1E 6QP
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