AN EMPTY property in Thornaby that was plagued with problems is ready to be brought back into use thanks to intervention from Stockton Council and social housing provider Tristar Homes, part of the Thirteen Group.
The end terraced property in Cornfield Road, Thornaby, had become a magnet for anti-social behaviour and was first brought to the Council’s attention in 2012.
Stockton Council worked to identify the homeowner and maintained constant contact to ensure the property was returned to use.
The finishing touches are currently being made to the property and in the coming days, Tristar Homes will advertise for a tenant. The social housing provider will also manage the property for the next seven years.
The owner of the terraced property chose to seek assistance through the Empty Homes Scheme, an innovative partnership between Stockton Council, registered housing providers Coast and Country and Thirteen, and the Homes and Communities Agency.
The scheme is targeted at bringing long term empty homes back into use by offering financial assistance and ongoing management of the property for a period of up to seven years.
Stockton Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing and Community Safety, Councillor Steve Nelson, said: “We know that our local communities want us to tackle empty homes quickly and effectively. That’s why we are committed to working with owners of unoccupied properties to bring their homes back into use and reduce the number of empty homes across the Borough. It’s really encouraging to see properties like this on Cornfield Road being brought back into use to provide a comfortable, high quality and affordable home for our residents.
“Empty homes can attract anti-social behaviour which can be a blight on communities but we are committed to supporting owners to bring them back into use. Through our Empty Homes Scheme we work with owners to provide a range of support, advice and assistance. And of course, when necessary we also use our powers to take action against owners who do not cooperate.”
Mark Dutton, Head of Partnerships and Resources for Thirteen, the parent company of Tristar Homes, added: “We are delighted to be able to work in partnership with the Council to renovate this long term empty property in Cornfield Road and make it available as a good quality and fully refurbished affordable home for local people. It is good to know that the Empty Homes Scheme is having such a positive impact and we look forward to doing more of this kind of work in future.”
Funding for the scheme has been secured for a further three years until 2018. More than 50 properties across Stockton have already been brought back into use through the Empty Homes Scheme, providing affordable and high quality housing for residents and families across the Borough and reducing the number of empty homes.
Information about the Empty Homes Scheme as well as advice and assistance for owners of empty properties is available on www.stockton.gov.uk/emptyhomes, by email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01642 527797.