The Scottish Government's review of the Private Rented Sector identified the need for more focus on bringing empty homes back into use. Following this review, the Scottish Government funded a partnership with Shelter Scotland and a number of local authorities including west Dunbartonshire Council to work together with empty home owners to bring these properties back into use.
Empty homes are wasted assets in our communities. Homes lying empty in communities can cost an average of £7,500 a year (lost rent, lost council tax, cost of boarding up a property) without taking into account other costs associated with empty homes such as anti-social behaviour, crime, and lost spend in the community. This cost also doesn't take into account the estimated up to 18% drop in property values for homes adjacent to an empty property.
Bringing an empty home back into can play a vital role in:
- Increasing housing supply
- Improving the quality of housing stock
- Regenerating and sustaining communities
- Stimulating local housing markets.
- Reducing carbon emissions
This is West Dunbartonshire's first Empty Homes Strategy (Homes Again West) which is our strategic response to bringing empty homes in the private sector back into use.