What We Do
We offer practical advice and assistance, so people and communities can create new homes by bringing empty properties back to life.
We campaign so those in power and those who own property make empty property available to people who need homes.
We develop knowledge
We undertake rigorous research to inform the debate on empty property, and make sure our campaigns are grounded in evidence.
We are enterprising
We strive to get the most from every penny, and work with others who share similar aims to create new ideas for homes from empty property.
Why It Matters
Many people in the UK need homes. There are 1.7 million families on housing waiting lists, and the country’s population is growing. Yet house building rates are at the lowest since the 1920s. Other than building more homes, reusing empty homes provides one of the few other sources of housing. What’s more it can do so at an affordable price. Surveys have shown that the average cost of renovating an empty home is about £10,000.
Reusing empty homes can also have environmental benefits. Recent research by Empty Homes’ New Tricks with Old Bricks found that renovation of an empty house creates about a third of the CO2 emissions of building a new house.
Who We Are
Empty Homes is an independent charity. We help people create homes from empty property and campaign for more empty homes to be brought into use, for the benefit of those in housing need.
We were established as a charitable housing association, which is a form of exempt charity. This means we are regulated by the FSA rather than the Charity Commission although we have the same charitable status and have to comply with the same rules as charities regulated by the charities commission.
Empty Homes was established in 1992 as “The Empty Homes Agency” a campaigning voice for those who needed homes, and for those who were dismayed at the thousands of homes left empty and abandoned.
Those principles have remained with us ever since. In the past few years we have successfully challenged government over the thousands of publicly-owned empty properties. We successfully campaigned for tax-breaks for owners of empty homes who wish to bring them back into use. We have given a voice to individuals, enabling them to secure action on empty homes that affect them, and have helped many successful local campaigns to bring empty homes back into use. As a result of our campaigns, today every council has a named person who seeks to get empty homes back into use, with the powers and resources to do so.
Over the years we have developed significant expertise and experience, and now provide practical help to people and organisations who wish to bring homes back into use. We provide training, carry out research and advise organisations on how best to get empty property into use.
We remain an independent charity: We are a charitable housing association, an industrial and provident society and a member of the National Federation of Housing.
Empty Homes is the operational name for Empty Homes Agency Limited. Registered in England as a charitable and Industrial Provident Society No. 27697R