The Local Government and Department for Communities stated that new money would be unearthed in order to make sure that over 5,000 derelict and vacant properties could be refurbished and placed back on the market over the course of the next three years.
Regeneration groups, housing associations, community organisations, councils, and voluntary organisations are all being invited to place a bid for a share of the funds that will be given out by the Homes & Communities Agency. Towns that fall into the ‘Portas Pilot’ category will be on the priority list because these are towns that will receive government funds from a high street regeneration scheme.
Dan Foster, the Local government minister, stated that empty homes are a blight to the community and attract rats and crime that keep people away from what would be available housing. He added, that the circle continues on and on because one bad home will bring down an entire area slowly leading to more places in which entire communities have ended up destroyed. His goal is to cut this circle off.
Foster went on to explain that the extra money that is available will be used in communities to help them refurbish abandoned and empty homes so that they can attract new residents that offer affordable housing for communities and families where they are desperately needed.
Chief executive Pat Ritchie of the House & Communities Agency stated that tackling empty homes in her community was a primary goal of her organisation and that they will be working hard with local partners to meet area needs and help create stronger neighbourhoods.