Although the UK’s property market appears on the surface to be booming, there is a growing problem of buildings standing empty. There are a number of reasons for this, including prices and developers not supplying the kinds of property the market wants.
London in particular has another issue in the form of properties owned by overseas buyers who only use their houses or apartments for a small portion of the year. Empty buildings can have a detrimental effect on an area as they affect the community and may cause a nuisance for neighboring dwellings. This in turn can have a knock on effect on the work of Home Buyer Survey London businesses like as https://www.samconveyancing.co.uk/Homebuyers-Survey/Home-Buyers-Survey-London who are finding that more and more properties are being reallocated for domestic use from commercial. This requires extra work and more in depth surveys on the properties to take place to ensure that they are fit to be used as domestic homes and meet the expected safety standards.
Supply and demand
There’s no doubt that with the population growing – particularly in the South East – there is greater demand for housing and commercial property. The problem is that in areas of high demand, prices tend to be expensive and therefore out of the range of people who need them most.
Solving the problem
Most local councils now have a mechanism that allows residents to report empty properties and will work with owners to find a solution and get the building back into use. Although the UK’s property market appears on the surface to be booming, there is a growing problem of buildings standing empty. There are a number of reasons for this, including prices and developers not supplying the kinds of property the market wants. Adding extensions to older buildings, perhaps using a tensile fabric structure, can help to add versatility and turn them to new uses.
Putting buildings back into use or turning commercial property into housing can lead to a need for changes to infrastructure. Once again, using a tensile fabric structure can be a quick and affordable solution to this for adding public spaces or walkways between buildings.
There’s also a need to look at how housing is allocated. Encouraging older tenants to downsize into smaller properties and free up housing for families is one example. In more than a third of households, there are two or more spare bedrooms.
The government could also do more to encourage turnover in the property market. This could be achieved through changes to stamp duty or by supporting schemes like bridging loans at attractive interest rates, allowing people to buy a new property before they’ve sold their old one.