Empty Homes

Jeff Diamond made this Freedom of Information request to Bradford City Council

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The request was successful.

Dear Bradford City Council,

I am a postgraduate university student currently comparing how local authorities deal with empty homes. Could you answer the following queries to be included as part of a comparative analysis for my thesis.

Number of empty properties bought back into occupation in 2017/18 through the following means:

a) Compulsory Purchase Order (and typical costs and timescales to involved)?
b) Empty Dwelling Management Order (Housing Act 2004 s134 and any issues with Residential Property Tribunals)?
c) Enforced Sale (Law of Property Act 1925 s103)?
d) Informal action (e.g. visits/telephone conversations and letters – how many?)
e) Other means : please could you indicate what these are?
f) Cost of service and how funded?
g) Staff costs/number of staff?
h) Total number of properties brought back into use?

Yours faithfully,

Jeff Diamond, Plymouth

Freedom of Information, Bradford City Council

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Mark Dewar, Bradford City Council

Dear Jeff,

 

Thank you for your request submitted under the terms of the Freedom of
Information Act 2000. This matter is now receiving our attention and we
aim to have a response out to you by 19 February 2019 within the period of
20 working days allowed for disclosure.  

 

You will be informed in advance if there is a charge for supplying copies
of the information.  We will also provide an explanation if any
information is not released to you.  If the requested information contains
references to any third parties, we may need to consult with them before
deciding whether or not to release the information.

 

Should you have any queries regarding your request, please feel free to
contact us at [1][Bradford City Council request email] quoting the reference no: Jan-128.

 

Yours sincerely,

 

 

Mark
Dewar                                                                          
 

Service Coordination Officer

Economy & Development

 

8th Floor,

Margaret McMillan Tower,

Bradford, BD1 1NN

 

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council
Department of Place

 

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Mark Dewar, Bradford City Council

Dear Jeff,

 

I refer to the freedom of information request submitted to Bradford
Council on 23 January 2019. The request is detailed below.

 

Your request:

 

Number of empty properties bought back into occupation in 2017/18 through
the following means:       

 

a) Compulsory Purchase Order (and typical costs and timescales to
involved)?

b) Empty Dwelling Management Order (Housing Act 2004 s134 and any issues
with Residential Property Tribunals)?        

c) Enforced Sale (Law of Property Act 1925 s103)?            

d) Informal action (e.g. visits/telephone conversations and letters – how
many?)            

e) Other means  : please could you indicate what these are?      

f) Cost of service and how funded?        

g) Staff costs/number of staff?

h) Total number of properties brought back into use?

 

 

Before your request can be dealt with, please provide the following
clarification:

 

f) Cost of service and how funded?        

g) Staff costs/number of staff?

h) Total number of properties brought back into use?

 

Please confirm what date(s) you are referring to for F-H above.

 

Until we receive clarification, the Council will consider this information
request to be suspended. The 20 working days to respond will commence when
we receive your clarification.

 

If we do not hear from you within one month of the date of this email we
will assume that you are no longer seeking access to this information and
the Council will take no further action.

 

Kind Regards,

 

Mark
Dewar                                                                          
 

Service Coordination Officer

Economy & Development

 

8th Floor,

Margaret McMillan Tower,

Bradford, BD1 1NN

 

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council
Department of Place

 

Get the Bradford Council mobile app: [1]www.bradford.gov.uk/app

 

This e-mail, and any attachments, may contain Protected or Restricted
information and is intended solely for the individual to whom it is
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software viruses, any attachments to this e-mail may nevertheless contain
viruses which our anti-virus software has failed to identify. You should
therefore carry out your own anti-virus checks before opening any
documents. Bradford Council will not accept any liability for damage
caused by computer viruses emanating from any attachment or other document
supplied with this e-mail. E-Mails may be subject to recording and / or
monitoring in accordance with relevant legislation.

If you would like to make a Freedom of Information request, please visit
our website [2]http://www.bradford.gov.uk/foi before you submit a request
as you may find the information and data that you want in the data that we
already publish in our Publication Scheme. The Scheme has a significant
amount of information which is available to you, without the need for a
specific request, and describes how we work and how to obtain information
published by our various departments.

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Dear Mark Dewar,

The time period requested for F,G H are 1st April 2017 to 31st Mar 2018.

Yours sincerely,

Jeff Diamond

Simon Welch, Bradford City Council

Dear Jeff Diamond,

 

I refer to the freedom of information request submitted to Bradford
Council on 23 January 2019.  Your request, and the Council’s response, are
both detailed below.

 

Request:

 

Number of empty properties bought back into occupation in 2017/18 through
the following means:       

 

a) Compulsory Purchase Order (and typical costs and timescales to
involved)?

b) Empty Dwelling Management Order (Housing Act 2004 s134 and any issues
with Residential Property Tribunals)?        

c) Enforced Sale (Law of Property Act 1925 s103)?            

d) Informal action (e.g. visits/telephone conversations and letters – how
many?)            

e) Other means  : please could you indicate what these are?      

f) Cost of service and how funded?        

g) Staff costs/number of staff?

h) Total number of properties brought back into use?

 

Response:

 

a) Compulsory Purchase Order (and typical costs and timescales to
involved)?

 

Answer: 4 – Unable to quantify costs involved. Timescales from the
beginning of the authorisation to proceed with a CPO to the property being
back in use vary massively but would be at the least 2 years, the most
could be up to 5.

 

b) Empty Dwelling Management Order (Housing Act 2004 s134 and any issues
with Residential Property Tribunals)?

 

Answer: 0

 

c) Enforced Sale (Law of Property Act 1925 s103)?

 

Answer: 4

 

d) Informal action (e.g. visits/telephone conversations and letters – how
many?)

 

Answer: 72 (although this is only the figure that can be claimed by the
Empty Homes Team as categorically brought back into use as a result of
their actions / products (i.e. loans)  – there will be others that have
been brought back into use through the teams advice and guidance).

 

e) Other means: please could you indicate what these are?

 

Answer: 0

 

f) and g) Cost of service and how funded? Staff costs/number of staff?

 

Answer: The service is funded through a combination of the Council’s own
revenue funding (for staff) and capital funding (for Compulsory Purchase,
Purchase by Agreement, Empty Property Loans).

 

The team consists of:

3 x Environmental Health Officers, one of which is full time, the other
two are job share therefore there are 2 x Full Time Equivalents

2 x Empty Homes Advisors

1 x Technician

 

In addition there is the Empty Homes and Loans Manager who also manages
the services staff dealing with assistance for owner occupiers, eg, Home
Appreciation Loans,  therefore only 50% of time is allocated to empty
homes.

 

Revenue costs for the team in 2017/18 were £202,641

Capital Costs for the team in 2017/18 were £693,969

 

h) Total number of properties brought back into use?

 

The Council has a performance indicator which is reported monthly and
records the number of empty property which, over the previous 12 months,
are no longer empty. This indicator updates each month with the preceding
12 months. In February 2018 the figure recorded was 4,559 which means that
between February 2017 and February 2018, 4,559 previously empty properties
were no longer empty.

 

Note: The figure is not available for March 2018.

 

 

 

Simon Welch

Service Coordination Manager 

Economy & Development 

 

Tel: 01274 432024 ● [mobile number]th Floor, Margaret McMillan Tower, Princes Way, Bradford, BD1 1NN

 

 

City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council

Department of Place

 

Get the Bradford Council mobile app: [1]www.bradford.gov.uk/app

This email, and any attachments, may contain Protected or Restricted
information and is intended solely for the individual to whom it is
addressed. It may contain sensitive or protectively marked material and
should be handled accordingly. If this email has been misdirected, please
notify the author immediately. If you are not the intended recipient you
must not disclose, distribute, copy, print or rely on any of the
information contained in it or attached, and all copies must be deleted
immediately. Whilst we take reasonable steps to try to identify any
software viruses, any attachments to this email may nevertheless contain
viruses which our anti-virus software has failed to identify. You should
therefore carry out your own anti-virus checks before opening any
documents. Bradford Council will not accept any liability for damage
caused by computer viruses emanating from any attachment or other document
supplied with this email. Emails may be subject to recording and / or
monitoring in accordance with relevant legislation.

 

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