Great British Property Scandal launches

Campbell Robb, Shelter’s Chief Executive, said: ‘Dispatches: Landlords from Hell further exposes the reality that rogue landlords are out there and they’re getting away with it.

‘Every day at Shelter we see the devastating impact these landlords have on peoples’ lives as families remain trapped in homes that cause misery and, in some cases, put lives at risk.

‘What’s more we believe thousands more families could suffer as changes in the Localism Act will see councils placing more vulnerable homeless households in private rented housing.

‘Councils have the powers to tackle rogue landlords but too many aren’t making the most of their armoury. We urge them to follow the lead of those councils taking a zero tolerance approach to rogue landlords to help drive them out for good.’

The series also addresses the issue of Britain’s empty homes. Architect and long-standing Shelter supporter George Clarke is campaigning to bring empty homes back into use as a step towards solving the housing crisis.

To find out how many empty homes there are compared to housing need in your area, use Shelter’s interactive  map

Campbell Robb said: ‘Bringing empty homes back into use could help to ease our desperate shortage of housing, and Channel 4’s empty homes programme will make a huge difference in highlighting the housing crisis we currently face.’

Channel 4’s survey for The Great British Property Scandal season found that:

– 59% of renters don’t believe they will ever be able to afford to buy a home
– 76% of British adults say they agree that Britain is in a housing crisis
– 63% say they do not believe that housing will become more affordable over the next two years.
 
Mr Robb commented: ‘These findings illustrate the scale and severity of the housing crisis that faces our country. Huge swathes of the population are completely priced out of the housing market, thousands of families are left struggling in an unstable and unaffordable private rented sector, and homelessness is rising.

‘The sad reality is every two minutes someone in Britain faces the nightmare of losing their home, and it really can happen to anyone one as all it takes is one thing to tip people into a downward spiral. Bold and radical action is urgently needed to solve a housing crisis that’s been decades in the making.’

Have your say on this story using the comment section below

20 thoughts on “Great British Property Scandal launches

  1. Corrinaq Fields

    I deliver tenancy support in the Southampton area, i work with adults who are vulnerable due to mental health and learing disbility’s. It is increasingly difficult to source housing for these adults, Council waiting list is massive and at least 5yr waiting for 1 bed property. We are encouraged to source private rented accommodation. Reputable lettings agency’s require gaurontors and deposits, we apply for rent bonds but also many will not except housing benefit. This as last nights programme highlighted leaves are vulnerable adults with homelessness or fueling the dodgy landlord properties. In Southampton empty buildings occupy the city centre or are demolished to make way for new builds for part buy part rent again out of vulnerable adults reach. Carry on the good fight George last nights programme greatly highlighted the demand for suitable housing.

  2. john dean

    Hi i live in blackburn lancashire and i and i have seen at first hand the amount of houses boarded up i am a joiner self employed i fit double glazing and all property repairs.
    at momont i have very little work and i keep hereing the goverment talking about lack of houses when there is houses all ready built all they have to do is reavate them .
    I worked in burnley for some years and i fit windows for custermers that lived in the south they have investied in northen propertys and not done anythink with them.
    i got told by my custermer that if they put new windows in and borded up the property it is classed as work in progress and if the council wanted to buy the house they would have to pay market value they bought at a very low cost at the time when the councils where of loading houses to make a quick buck .
    Some one made a lot of money and the propertys are still there i got offered to put some money in aproperty i got told invest 5 grand and with in 5 month the coucil would buy the propery back as renavated although it was only had new windows and boared up and i would double my investment but i never did ps why cant the goverment give andhelp fund the local colllieges to take groups of houses and renavate them useing school leavers the chance of having a prentaship in all trades i think this would solve too problems one use of boarded up house and get them back in to use and reduce the dole que there are tradesmen ready to take on this challange . many thanks john

  3. john dean

    local investers nearer me are thinking of buying a plot of land local to me to build a block of flats for peaple who have come of drugs and beer and want rehoming.
    why cant they renavate a row of houses that would be cheaper this is the council selling land instead of selling houses the goverment should step in and stop this scandle some one is making a fast buck at the cost public that we are paying for propertys to remain emty

  4. Andrew Young

    I have contacted councils direct to try and buy properties from them, I have offered cash prurchase and have agreed to sign a contract to re-let the properties to the council if required, however many properties in the south west are not council owned but the councils have to deal with the problem of the problems caused by derelict properties. I have asked to be put in contact with owners but the council are not willing to do this due to data protection or similar. trying to buy a property in derelict condition or making enquiries about them is very difficult and perhaps it would help if something could be done to improve this situation, I am sure there are smaller private builders and investors out there who want to buy but only the large housing associations seem to get the chance, councils should contact people such as myself and not use tax payers money to board up such properties

  5. jacee Jackson

    There seems to be no control over Estate Agents who market sub-standard housing for rent. Feel that this is an area that needs to be controlled.

  6. Nick Wilson

    George is our concience! We all should be ashamed at the stupidity he reveals , it is only logical to use all the homes available to allow our fellow citizens the live in a real Home. I watch George discuss the shame and misery which people tolerate and he shames this Government and the stupidity of the previous regimes.
    George is totally correct, empty homes should be rescued for our people to live in and create viable communities.
    The only shame is that George and his fellow presenters must motivate us all to get the only logical action.

  7. A manser

    It is time that local authorities, housing associations and government came together and brought vacant properties into habitable dwellings. There are many unemployed people who would love to work on such projects. It takes people communicating and working together to bring such projects to fruition. It is time to work together NOW

  8. R Gregson

    Having watched your programme I would like to put another idea forward, it might work it might not. If I was willing to start off a fund with say £100.00 and other families that could afford to give weather it was £10 or whatever they could afford. Maybe we could do like children in need, establish a fund which could generate enough money to restore at least some properties and get the ball rolling. As we the public can see the government can only do so much with the situation we are in. Therefore maybe it’s up to us the people to get things started.

  9. dan hall

    this country needs to sort out its priorites ex soldiers not gettin housing is a joke im sure if you were polish and couldnt speak a word of english you could get one sraight away

  10. Pete Lans

    When it suits the authorities they invoke Compulsory Purchase Orders, citing “needs of the majority” etc. Any local authority, housing association, or landlord owned property that stands empty for no good reason for more than six months should be liable to a CPO to bring that property into “Public Ownership”. It should then be rented/sold to a needy family.

  11. Nicholas Georgiou

    The level of criminal incompetence by our politicians beggars belief! Hundreds of millions to bed and breakfast and to HMOs, some in such a bad state they should be closed a a real threat to health , while many sound empty properties are boarded up at great cost. With so many in the construction industry needing work, is to much to ask for some joined up logical approach? Now they wish to double the discount on council homes built and paid for by the taxpayers to “encourage ” home ownership when in reality it is disposing of public social housing for which now there is the greatest need . Morally wrong and financially, very expensive money!£300 billion on havings schools and hospitals built using the so called public private finance “initiative”,and politicians say they are looking at efficiency savings, God help us all!

  12. MR P Edon

    I live In Oldham Where The local Council Have Applied What They Call A Regeneration project .A Couple Of Years Ago,They Put Thousands Of Homes Under Compulsory Purchase Orders, People Where Forced To Move ( Some against there will) From Perfectly Habitable Houses.Which Have Since Been Demolished.
    Yes It Would Have Cost Hundreds Of Thousands To Update Most OF The Houses.But In There Infinite Wisdom, The People In Power (councillors) Thought It Would Be Better To Spend Millions .
    Now The Outcome Of There Actions, Is That There Are Community’s Ripped Apart, Vast Areas Where Houses Have Been Demolished, Which Have Not As Yet Been Rebuilt .And Shear Misery.
    It Is Not Just The Issue Of The Empty Housing Stocks That Need To Be Addressed, But Also Why Are Councils Allowed To Go Ahead With These Crazy,Total Inappropriate And Expensive Schemes

  13. lisa tylee

    i watched the channel 4 programme the british housing scandel. I think its totally disgusting how this government is letting perfectly decent homes and communities go to rack and ruin,it would save the taxpayer a lot of money to do up the houses than pay private rentals and line the pockets of property developers etc. It is a basic human right to have a HOME above peoples heads,the politicians want to really look at how some people live in disgusting conditions with a no hope for the future,it shouldnt be happening in the 21st century. why do the government waste so much money,also like i always said its middle england that will be the finish of this country,the people who work hard etc but when they fall on hard times and dont get real help with there mortgages etc and lose there homes they are the larger population that will bring this country to its knees with are already at bursting point housing shortage. Why do governments wait till its too late and cost taxpayers far more than it should cost. Why are you even contemplating selling council houses, didnt you learn anything from the last time you did this, it will create even less housing, create greed, course rows and resentment, this country has enough of that already,i hope someone will actually do something about this problem properly, well done channel 4 for high lighting this subject.

  14. Mike Jenkinson

    A good programme Channel 4. Perhaps there will be a good outcome just don’t hold your breath. The only time something will be done is when someone makes money out of it. Solving a problem is alien to the powers that be, only money passes through their thought processes.
    Yes there are empty houses and yes there are people who want a home but actually doing the joined up thinking that one might solve the problem for the other is beyond their imagination.
    Why is it someone can qualify for a 2 bedroom flat and not a two bedroom house?

  15. wayne davies

    I stand behind all that the great british property scandal is trying to highlight, i witness first hand the issues of Homelessness as part of an out reach team, we constantly walk past vacant properties be it warehousing or houses that with the right amount of money could be converted, we are desperately trying to secure finance to do up a site we occupy to help out.

    Lat night as we went out to Worcester we found a guy sleepig outside a hostel as there was no room, another couple in a tent on the side of the road and many more just sleeping rough, how many more people have to die as the cold apporaches before the Goverment wakes up to it’s own bureaucracy and starts to deal with the issue and get these houses opened up, i know the waiting list in the midlands is horrendous, i would love to waive a magic wand but that’s just not going to work.

    Come on Goverment and go George and co.

  16. Maggie Lewis

    No no no no no no no no no no no no no no no no to empty homes and devastated communities
    Yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yes to occupied homes and vibrant living communities

  17. Dave Mcguire

    I have recently renovated a property in the Kirklees area. I am hoping to sell however if I do not sell letting is the next route.The reason for this post is to offer a sujestion to the Property Scandal team. Could the council Tax that is charged on empty properties be diverted to the renovation of empty property????

  18. Anne

    It says everything about how far the west has come in losing the run of itself and how far bureacracy and bruecrats have taken over everything and made an A1 mess of it all with their proverbial red tape. The fact that the solution as put forward by Mr Carke, starting a fund that is continually circulating, is what is used by a good many charitable agencies in so called 3rd world countries. The answer, take it out of the hands of the burecrats and politicians and you will have vibrant communities once again, which leads to lower crime rate to say nothing of the work that would be generated, not by the rip off corporate builders, but form tradesmen within the community, which could work in with schools for work experience, hopefully leading to apprenticeships, thus helping the pupils that would like to work with their hands gain some confidence and self respect rather than be discarded becuase they are not academic and then drop out. The other good thing there would be less for the burecrats to do, so there would not be so many required thus freeing up even more money to be spent on what councils should be about, libraries, rubbish disposal, etc. They have proved that they couldn’t plan an escape for a rat out of a cardboiard box and in the process squandered millions of pound of tax payers money.

  19. Mr D Philpott

    It’s about time our “rulers” stopped playing God around the world and started putting their own house in order. Instead of financing private jets and huge plush palaces for a few murderous dictators in some of the third world countries they should ensure their own citizens are fed and housed first. This country used to be a world leader – we’re not any more, and it’s about time our – so called – leaders realised this. Get britain sorted out first – then we can perhaps help others out.

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