A letter from a local housing association working in partnership with the local authority and looking for end to properties on which they can purchase a lease on to the private sector leasing scheme. There are two follow up letters. A letter from building control warning of the possible instability of the chimney and gable end wall again with two follow-up letters asking what remedy action the owner proposes to take. Another letter threatens that the local authority will carry out the works in default if the owner does not contact them soon. Click here: Enact Conveyancing Melbourne
Planning have also written to her. The garden has become extremely overgrown and used for fly-tipping. The front windows of the property are broken and the whole site is adversely affecting amenity of the neighbourhood. There are two letters waiting for her together with the more strongly worded letter threatening section action under s215 notice together with the intention to put up the windows.
More letters have been sent by Housing. They are conducting an empty property survey and would like to know this one is empty. (as she had to give this information to receive her 50 per cent council tax discount she cannot understand why she is being asked again). Also on the doormat is a leaflet asking she lives next door to an empty property and to notify the local authority if she is…. There are three letters in all. There is also a letter from Housing asking if she would be willing to sell the property to a local housing association as part of their “Purchase and Repair” programme with no mention of the other letters sent direct from the housing association. There are is also a letter from Economic Development inviting her – as the resident – to a community meeting on regeneration of that particular street. The meeting was three months previously. And the local councillor has dropped a line in his official capacity expressing concerns of the local residents’ association that the property is becoming a haven for drug users. Seventeen letters in total. Imagine the expense.
The owner calls the planning consultant when she gets home and tells them that she thinks that leaving the property empty is quite safe as the local authority clearly does not know what each department is doing. Unfair criticism really as the local authority is clearly acting on long-term empties – it is just that that uncoordinated action gives an impression of lack of authority and joined-up thinking. So the administration costs and time involved in sending those seventeen letters has gained the local authority nothing – in fact it has lost considerably by sending out the wrong collective message.