It is more important than ever that we make full use of the existing homes in Wales. Local authorities in Wales are increasingly using a range of measures aimed at bringing long term empty homes back into use and offering support and encouragement to owners, including where necessary the use of their enforcement powers.
Houses into Homes Scheme
The Welsh Government launched the Houses into Homes scheme in April 2012 to help tackle the substantial numbers of empty homes in Wales. The scheme is supported by a £20million recyclable loan fund which provides loans to bring empty houses or commercial buildings back into use as homes for sale or rent. The loans are interest free and are available to individuals, charities, companies and businesses. A maximum loan of £25,000 is available per property and this has to be paid back within two or three years, depending on whether the property is sold or let. The scheme is operated by individual Local Authorities who are working together in regional groups and evaluated by Sheffield Hallam University.
In 2016 a joint steering group was established to monitor and review the Houses into Homes Scheme and Home Improvement Loans Scheme. The group meets on a quarterly basis with membership from the WLGA, Welsh Government and Welsh local authorities.
For further information contact: Jim McKirdle