Memorandum by Places for People (EMP 69)
Over the last five years it could be argued
that two distinct views about the causes of empty housing have
gained credence. One is that the management practices and investment
polices of public agencies have been inefficient and have resulted
in homes not being let.
The otheras exemplified in the CURS study
"Changing Housing Markets and Urban Regeneration in the M62
Corridor",is that empty homes are the consequences
of long term economic change and changing customer expectations
and demand, resulting in the severe dislocation of housing markets.
Unlike the first interpretation this interpretation of low demand
and housing market changes is readily identifiable geographically
The Places for People Group operates across
200 local authority areas. It includes NBH, the largest RSL in
the UK with over 40,000 homes. The Group has invested heavily
over the years in housing markets, which now exhibit low demand.
This was when different Housing Corporation grant regimes pertained.
In hindsight, some government programmes, like Estate Action,
have not contributed to long-term neighbourhood sustainability
as they focused too heavily on housing.