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Enforcement action

We always do our best to negotiate with owners to bring about improvements to empty properties, as we believe the best solution is to return these wasted and much needed homes back in to use.

In the event that our negotiations fail, or if the owner cannot be traced, we may consider enforcement action. This action will vary depending on specific circumstances and the condition of the property, ranging from property improvement and management, through to an alternative approach, for example a change in ownership.

A property notice that starts enforcement action can be served on a freeholder, leaseholder, agent or person managing a property.

Action we could take could include:

A compulsory purchase order
Section 17 of the Housing Act 1985 gives us the power to acquire buildings through compulsory purchase. Compulsory purchase can apply to properties which are derelict or abandoned and where the owner provides no plans for bringing the property back into use. 

An enforced sales procedure
The Law of Property Act 1925 enables us to sell vacant properties to recover any debt owing to us.  Where money is owed to us, a charge is placed on the property before it is sold through an auction. 

 An Empty Dwelling Management Order (EDMO)
An Empty Dwelling Management Order (EDMO) allows us to effectively 'step into the shoes' of the owner. There are two types of order - an interim EDMO and a final EDMO. They allow us to take over privately owned houses and flats that have been unoccupied for a specified period of time and where certain other conditions are met. 

An EDMO is made against the person with the most relevant interest in the dwelling - known as the relevant proprietor. Where the dwelling is held on a freehold this would be the freeholder.

Page updated on: 03/05/2016

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