NOTE: This content is old - Published: Wednesday, Apr 11th, 2012.
A local family who were forced to sleep in their car have been given a place to live thanks to Wrexham Council’s empty homes scheme.
The family, who wish not to be named, resorted to sleeping in their car after they were unable to find somewhere to live.
However, they have now been given a new home in New Broughton as the result of a collaborative scheme between Wrexham County Borough Council, Dee Rentals and the property owner.
Their new house was refurbished at no cost to the tax payer thanks to a special empty homes loan provided to the owner by Dee Rentals.
The family are said to have been overwhelmed by the support they were given by Homeless Officer, Lisa Benbow, from the Housing Options Team and Andrew Grim from Dee Rentals.
It is estimated that the average empty home costs owners £7,020 per year in loss of income and costs incurred as result of the property being empty.
The scheme is the latest in a series of measures taken by Wrexham County Borough Council to bring empty homes back into use.
A new Empty Home Loan and Management Scheme is also currently operating in the county in partnership between Offa Lettings and Wrexham County Borough Council.
The scheme will provide affordable housing for local residents across Wrexham and the council is also in the process of finalising its Enforcement Procedures ready for 2012/13.
The use of Enforcement Powers including Enforced Sale and Empty Dwelling Management Orders will be considered on empty properties where the owner is unwilling to take steps to bring the property back into use.
Andy Lewis, Lead Member for Housing and Public Protection said: “This case highlights the strain being put on families during these difficult economic times.
“I can only imagine how difficult things must have been for the family during the time they were homeless, especially with a baby on the way.
“I would like to thank the officers involved, as well as Dee Rentals, for the support they gave the family and for providing a good quality home in a short space of time.”
If you wish to report empty properties in the county borough of Wrexham, for further information on the loan and management schemes or if you own an empty property in the county borough please contact Siôn Wynne, Housing Partnership Officer on 01978 315 587 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you are homeless, in danger of being homeless or need some housing advice please contact the Housing Options Team on 01978 292 947 or call into the Council’s Lambpit Street Offices, in Wrexham town centre 9:00 – 16:30 Monday to Thursday and 9:00 – 16:00 Friday.