The Scottish Empty Homes Partnership is funded by the Scottish Government and hosted by Shelter Scotland. We exist to encourage Scotland’s approximately 43,000 privately-owned long-term empty homes back into use. At a time of a housing emergency we know that every home matters.
The partnership was first formed in 2010, after the review of the private rented sector identified that empty homes can play an important part in meeting our housing challenges.
Our aims and objectives
Our aim is to bring as many privately-owned empty homes back into use as possible by meeting our four objectives:
- Encourage every council in Scotland to have a dedicated Empty Homes Officer We know that in local authority areas where owners can access advice and information, more homes are unlocked.
- Support the national network of Empty Homes Officers Empty Homes Officers give advice and information on a range of issues and we support them with tailored training, workshops and facilitated best practice meetings.
- Encourage registered social landlords, community groups and other private bodies to engage in empty homes work A single empty home can cause a nuisance to a community and clusters of empty homes can lead to a spiral of decline. We want to make sure that other organisations recognise the importance and value of bringing derelict properties into homes.
- Encourage councils to mainstream empty homes work It doesn’t make financial sense to allow properties to remain empty and deteriorate. Our value tool highlights the obvious and hidden benefits to empty homes work.
How we can help you
We are here to encourage local authorities to provide advice and assistance to owners at a local level. We know that more homes are brought back into use where an Empty Homes Officer can speak to an owner to understand why the property is empty and then offer tailored solutions to turn it into a home again.
Not all councils have an Empty Homes Service or a dedicated Empty Homes Officer. We want every council in Scotland to recognise the importance of our existing assets, and to proactively offer advice and assistance to people who are stressed or struggling to deal with an empty home. Where they don’t, our Advice Service provides information and support to owners directly so that no one has to deal with an empty home on their own.
You can find out here how our advice service has assisted owners, neighbours and those looking to take on an empty home.
long-term empty private-sector homes in Scotland. These are properties that have been empty for six months or longer and are liable for council tax.
£10,000 - £40,000
average cost of bringing an empty property back to use, compared with an average cost of between £130,000 to £300,000 for building a three-bedroom house (www.checkatrade.com/blog/cost-guides/cost-build-house)
properties brought back to use in 2021/22, bringing the total brought back into use since commencement of SEHP to 7,759
Local authorities that have dedicated empty homes services or officers
How you can help us
Living in a community with a run-down or derelict house nearby is unpleasant. If you are aware of an empty home in your community, you can help by:
If your council does not have an Empty Homes Officer and you want help, you can:
- Contact your local councillor either by letter or email - their contact details should be on your local council website or get in touch with the Advice Service for assistance
- Contact your local councillor face to face - they hold regular drop-in 'surgeries' for the people they represent to raise issues with them
- Arrange a specific meeting with community members
- Why Empty Homes Matter: How empty homes can contribute to Housing to 2040
- Annual Report 2020/21 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2019/20 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2018/19 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2017/18 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2016/17 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2015/16 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2014/15 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2013/14 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2012/13 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2011/12 (PDF)
- Annual Report 2010/11 (PDF)
- News & Events
- How we have helped
- Advisory Group