Empty Homes - Frequently Asked Questions

How many empty homes are there in Southend?

Government data shows that out of approximately 80,180 homes in Southend, 724 have been empty for six months or longer.

Is a house insured if it is empty for a long time?

So long as the insurance provider is aware that the property is unoccupied, and you meet the terms and conditions of your policy, a house can be covered.

Do I pay council tax on unoccupied property?

If a home has been unoccupied and substantially unfurnished for more than 2 years an empty homes premium will be charged. Our Council Tax webpages have further information.

What is an Empty Dwelling Management Order (EDMO)?

An EDMO empowers local councils to purchase long-term empty homes from owners so that they can then be rented out to tenants.

How do I evict squatters from my empty home?

Squatters are people who are living in your property with no right to do so and are trespassing on your property. We recommend seeking legal advice immediately so that the eviction can legally take place.

Can I request a list of empty council owned properties?

The Council are not able to provide you with the full details for our empty properties for data protection reasons.

The release of this information may also increase the risk of squatters or break ins.

What if my Empty Home is not empty, for example, it is as a second property or holiday home?

The Council may investigate to make sure your property is genuinely furnished and used as a holiday home or second property. Once we are satisfied with our investigation, we will advise you that your property falls into this category.

What happens if I own an empty home and I do not want to rent it or sell it, allowing it get into a state of disrepair?

The Council has a range of legal powers to address issues as a result of empty homes. This may involve pests/vermin, overgrown gardens or building/structural safety concerns. The Council will always try to work with owners before this happens

Contact Empty Homes Team

Telephone: 01702 215002

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