MK Council cabinet approves new Empty Homes Strategy

    Milton Keynes Council’s cabinet has approved a new Empty Homes Strategy to increase the supply of local homes in the town.

    More than 2,000 homes in Milton Keynes have been sitting empty for six months or more, with 600 of these remaining vacant for more than two years, says the council.

    That equates to around 23,000 ‘wasted’ months when people in need were looking for accommodation.

    Milton Keynes Council’s cabinet approved a new Empty Homes Strategy on Tuesday (4th June) to maximise the number of homes in use locally. 

    While the majority of MK’s empty homes are brought back into use without council intervention, the strategy includes ways to tackle homes becoming long term empty in the first instance.

    The council already offers support and guidance for owners who are not sure what to do with their properties, including a private sector leasing scheme called ‘secure lets’ which guarantees a landlord’s rent each month. 

    The new approach also sets out how the council can intervene to encourage, and ultimately force owners to bring empty homes back into use using its enforcement powers. 

    Around 120 of the empty properties in Milton Keynes sit unfurnished as well as unused.

    Cabinet Member for Housing and Regeneration, Councillor Nigel Long, commented: "There are far too many empty properties in Milton Keynes.  Often these are good properties that could home families in need."

    "Our starting point will always be to work with owners to bring homes back into use."

    He concluded: "The Empty Homes Strategy will help us reduce the number of long-term empty properties and ensure Milton Keynes remains an affordable place to live."

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