GMB call for unoccupied homes to be used to house people on waiting lists

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GMB CALL FOR LOCAL AUTHORITIES TO BE GIVEN POWERS TO USE OF VACANT DWELLINGS LEFT EMPTY FOR PROLONGED PERIODS TO HOUSE PEOPLE ON THE HOUSING WAITING LIST

Overall there is no alternative but for councils to increase the supply of council homes for rent at genuinely affordable rents, but using the already existing housing stock to house people is something that shouldn’t be overlooked, says GMB London

GMB have called for London local authorities to be given powers to use vacant dwellings left empty for prolonged periods to house people on their housing waiting list. This after a study by GMB which compares the number of long-term vacant dwellings (those empty for at least six months) in each borough in 2018 and the number of households on London Local Authority housing waiting lists in the same year.

In 2018 London had a total of 22,481 long-term vacant dwellings, 2,244 more than the year before. At the same time, in 2018 there were 232,409 households on Local Authority housing waiting lists.

Southwark is the borough which in 2018 had the most total long-term vacant dwellings in London with 1,766. The number of households on the Southwark Council housing waiting list in 2018 was 6,778.

Other London boroughs with a high number of long-term vacant dwellings in 2018 include Croydon which had 1,521 long-term vacant dwellings and 5,138 households on their waiting list; Camden had 1,210 long-term vacant dwellings and 3,074 on their waiting list; Kensington and Chelsea had 1,115 long-term vacant dwellings and 3,330 on their waiting list; Lewisham also had 1,115 long-term vacant dwellings and 9,921 households on their waiting list; and Barnet had 1,065 long-term vacant dwellings and had 2,648 households on their housing waiting list in 2018.

The figures covering 33 boroughs in London are set out in the table below, ranked by the borough that had the highest number of long-term vacant dwellings in 2018. This is from a new study by GMB London Region of official data for 33 boroughs in London. It compares the number of long-term vacant dwellings in 2018 by borough and the number of households on each local authority’s housing waiting list in 2018. [See notes to editors for sources]

 

Rank

London Boroughs

No. of long-term vacant dwellings (Oct 2018)

No. households on Local Authority waiting lists (2018)

London

22,481

232,409

1

Southwark

1,766

6,778

2

Croydon

1,521

5,138

3

Camden

1,210

3,074

4

Kensington and Chelsea

1,115

3,330

5

Lewisham

1,115

9,921

6

Barnet

1,065

2,648

7

Enfield

1,026

3,444

8

Hackney

933

12,766

9

Lambeth

920

23,364

10

Newham

894

26,139

11

Ealing

850

13,685

12

Greenwich

830

13,618

13

Haringey

732

9,650

14

Sutton

686

1,587

15

Tower Hamlets

634

18,808

16

Havering

630

2,234

17

Islington

621

14,469

18

Merton

611

9,802

19

Hillingdon

563

1,687

20

Waltham Forest

552

7,330

21

Bexley

488

6,613

22

Richmond upon Thames

488

3,944

23

Bromley

482

3,438

24

Redbridge

457

5,408

25

Brent

405

3,498

26

Westminster

304

3,907

27

Harrow

299

1,883

28

Kingston upon Thames

292

29

Hammersmith and Fulham

278

1,644

30

City of London

244

656

31

Hounslow

191

2,157

32

Wandsworth

173

5,202

33

Barking and Dagenham

106

4,587

 

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