Holyrood committee launches inquiry into Scotland’s empty homes

The extent of empty homes and how these can be brought back into use is to be investigated by the Scottish Parliament’s local government and communities committee.

National Records of Scotland data from 2017 has shown that 4% of the dwellings in Scotland are unoccupied and the committee’s inquiry will investigate why.

James Dornan MSP

The new inquiry will examine the scale of the issue, the effectiveness of current legislation and what more can be done to prevent properties remaining empty for extended periods of time.

For the purpose of the inquiry, second homes will considered as distinct from empty homes.

Convener of the local government and communities committee, James Dornan MSP, said: “There are a number of reasons why a property can be empty, but empty homes can have a huge impact on communities and reduce available housing supply at a time when housing is in great demand.

“The committee will explore the extent of the problem and the impact this can have in both urban and rural communities across Scotland.

“We want to ensure local authorities have appropriate powers to tackle this issue and that everything possible is being done to encourage owners to put these empty homes back into use. To do this we want to hear from local authorities, housing experts and those who have been impacted by empty homes in their communities.”

The committee is calling for evidence on its website.

The call for written views will close on May 17.

Tags: empty homes

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