Empty properties | Sevenoaks District Council

Empty properties

If you own an empty home it could be losing you money. It is estimated that the cost of leaving a home empty can be thousands of pounds a year after taking into account lost rent, taxes, insurance and deterioration of the property.

There are many reasons why a property may remain empty, such as a lack of funds for renovation works, legal issues, or the owner finding the option of letting the property too complicated.

How we can help

We aim to help bring long-term empty properties back into use by working with owners.

Contact us to find out how we can help, including:

  • Interest-free loans worth up to £25,000 to make an empty home habitable for rental or sale
  • Our ‘Private Sector Lettings’ scheme can help find tenants and we offer incentives, including: a one off payment of up to £1,500, ongoing support, a full inventory service, extra insurance options, and more
  • Advice on property auctions - a great option for empty properties as these attract developers, local builders and cash buyers
  • Details of potential buyers looking for an empty home and can even help you arrange your own 'open house' event
  • If your property has been empty for over two years, we can provide evidence to enable you to claim the reduced rate of 5% VAT on renovation/conversation works
  • Advice and guidance on planning and building regulations and Council Tax exemptions
  • Tips for finding and appointing reliable builders
The Sevenoaks District Empty Homes Action Plan sets out the Council's approach to tackling the problem of long term empty properties.

The 'No Use Empty' Scheme

We are part of a Kent-wide initiative called No Use Empty, which is run by Kent County Council and Kent District Councils.

The No Use Empty website has useful information and contacts for anyone owning, buying or selling an empty home.  

The No Use Empty loan scheme could offer loans of up to £25,000 per property to carry out the necessary works to bring an empty home back into use (subject to certain criteria).


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