We define an empty property as a dwelling that has been unoccupied for more than six months.We focus on:
- Single-family dwelling houses
- Houses used for multiple occupation
- Residential accommodation over/adjoining commercial property
Not all empty properties brought to our attention fall within the categories described above (such as commercial properties). However we may make further enquiries to assist in resolving issues of concern or to provide advice on making better use of such a property.
There are private properties standing empty in Oxford and at the same time there is a huge demand for housing. Empty properties are a wasted home. They are often cause for concern to people living in the locality due to vandalism or squatting.
There are significant costs to owners in keeping a property empty including the loss of income through sale or by renting.
What action we will take
Our commitment is to bring empty properties back into good use as soon as possible. To do this we:
- offer advice and assistance to owners if needed
- where all other options fail, use compulsory measures to stop the property becoming a nuisance and to bring it back into use.
Once an empty property has been identified, we will contact the owner to determine the reason why their property is empty. Where appropriate, a range of options to secure reoccupation will be discussed, and advice offered as to the most suitable. The Empty Property Officer will assist in bringing the agreed option to completion.