Carrots and sticks needed for empty homes

Greens have backed Council plans to increase council tax on long term empty homes but called for some of the extra income to be used to help home-owners bring property into use.

Steve BurgegssGreen housing spokesperson Councillor Steve Burgess said: “We have been pushing for years for the council to up its game on flats and houses lying empty in the Capital that could be homes for people. These empty homes are literally a waste of space and can also be a focus for anti-social behaviour and vandalism.

“At a time of increasing pressure to build on our precious pockets of green space, the city needs to be sure every single existing potential home is used.

“This new proposal should be one part of a range of carrots and sticks to bring empty homes into use. We need to work actively with owners to help them make use of long-term empty homes, by offering advice or financial help if necessary. And we can use the extra income from additional council tax to fund that help.”

See the Edinburgh Evening News for the full story