More empty houses brought back into use

6 September 2017

Empty home owners in west Cheshire are learning that the Council is serious about seeing empty properties brought back in to use following an increase in the use of Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) powers.

CPO’s are available to the Council under the Housing Act 1985 to purchase houses to provide much needed accommodation. Following the appointment of a new CPO officer, the Empty Homes Team have been able to significantly increase the number of properties considered for CPO action with 29 properties on the current action list. 

Councillor Angela Claydon, Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “We are keen to make it clear to empty home owners that we are not afraid to use the legal powers available to us, including the use of compulsory purchases orders, which allow the Council to take ownership of empty properties to ensure that they are re-occupied.

“Our Empty Homes Team is available to provide advice and support to home owners but where an owner is refusing to engage with us then we won’t hesitate to use enforcement measures to bring the boroughs empty homes back into use”.   The use of the power is always a last resort and is only used where the owner is not taking genuine steps towards bringing the property back in to use. Market value compensation is paid to the property owner following the successful confirmation of a CPO, allowing the Council to then sell the property to a new owner that is committed to renovating it and bringing it back into use. 

The number of cases is set to increase as more properties are identified for action. A priority scoring system is used to ensure that the worst properties and those empty the longest are targeted.  With many owners choosing to co-operate with the Council before the matter gets as far as a CPO, the Empty Homes Team are seeing the number of empty properties brought back into use increasing year on year.  Last year, the team were able to bring 150 empty properties back into use through their intervention. 

If you are an empty home owner or wish to complain about an empty property that is affecting you, Cheshire West and Chester Council is running regular Empty Home Surgeries. They are on the first Tuesday of the month, starting from 3 October, 11am-1pm at Ellesmere Port Library and Winsford Library, where a member of the Empty Homes Team will be on hand to offer advice and assistance.

Empty home before renovation
Empty home before renovation 

Empty home after renovation
Empty home after renovation 

Discuss this article

Please see terms below before using this feature
Please be aware that the facility above is a Facebook service, posting your views will make some of your Facebook information visible to everyone (as with any Facebook activity).

The system administrators (VISAV Limited) monitor the content added. Any misuse or objectionable material should be reported to

The views expressed do not represent the views of the system administrators who are VISAV Limited, the Police, Neighbourhood Watch and other Information Provider using this service. The System Administrators make no guarantee, endorsement and accept no liability, regarding the discussion service above, including, but not limited to, its availability, accuracy, currency, content, quality or lack of objectionable or offensive content.

© 2019 Cheshire West and Chester. All rights reserved.