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Date published: 20th October 2018

North Norfolk District Council has been pioneering an award winning approach to bringing empty homes back into use across the district.

Using an ‘enforcement board’, collaborative approach for the last four years the Council has helped to bring hundreds of homes back into use through a wide range of action from working together with owners to support renovations, demolition and re-building to taking enforcement action and undertaking compulsory purchase where owners fail to make positive changes.

Currently, less than 1% of North Norfolk’s housing stock is classed as being empty which is below the national average.  In the last twelve months, North Norfolk District Council has reduced the number of empty properties by 20% from 603 to 482.

Where necessary, an application for a Compulsory Purchase Order could be made, which would see the homeowner instructed by the Government to sell their property to the Council.  In February this year, the Council successfully completed the compulsory purchase of two properties in Sculthorpe that were left empty since they were built in the late 1990s.

In many cases, long term empty properties are associated with anti-social behaviour, including illicit drinking and drug-use and blight local communities.  Properties left empty can fall into disrepair and become dilapidated and dangerous very quickly. North Norfolk District Council will take action against owners who are not prepared to get on with the job of returning a property back into use and will use enforcement powers where necessary.

Last updated: 20th October 2018