Long-Term Empty Property and Five Statutory Notices...

Date: 24 April 2019 Client: Local Authority Project Type: Five Statutory Notices Download Case Study (PDF)

This semi-detached house, situated in a suburban area, provides an excellent example of the convoluted lifecycle of many properties that come to the attention of Local Authorities. UK Property Rescue worked under the instruction of the Local Authority to remedy or rectify no less than five separate statutory notices over an extended timeframe.

Initially, a fire in this hoarded house had resulted in the owners having to vacate the property. No further remedy followed and the house fell into disrepair as a Long-Term Empty property.

The Local Authority took initial action under Section 4 of the Prevention of Damage by Pests Act 1949, and UK Property Rescue were instructed to undertake work in default to clear the overgrown gardens and significant quantities of waste. Subsequently, under Section 215 of The Town & County Planning Act 1990, we repaired and rectified the unsightly external appearance of the property. Furthermore, under Section 29 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1982, we disconnected the utilities and made the property safe and secure. Later, under Section 83 of the Public Health Act 1936, we cleared the hoarded goods and waste internally from the property which had led to filthy and verminous conditions. Finally, under Section 80 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, we removed the chimney stack and breast which had become unsafe structurally and had also led to penetrating damp affecting the adjoining property.

Despite the work being conducted over an extended period of time, the key to our working relationship with the Local Authority was understanding and following the legal framework at every stage of the work, as each component was carried out under a separate and specific notice. Working with the Council, often with only 24-48 hours notice, it was invaluable to have the right sub-team of people in place to project manage each aspect of the work, providing a simple and efficient one-stop solution for the Local Authority in these matters, and co-ordinating daily with their officers on the ground at the property.

Works instructed and carried out included:-

  • Clearing the hoarded goods from the property internally, whilst recovering keep-sakes for the owner
  • Clearing the property of other fire damaged items
  • Disconnection and making safe the utilities at the property (gas, electrics and water)
  • Removing the dangerous chimney between the subject and neighbouring property, and repairing the roof once removed
  • Carrying out other remedial structural works to ensure the building was safe for the subsequent works
  • Clearing of overgrown and rubbish-strewn gardens to prevent further rodent infestation
  • Repairing and decorating the front facade
  • Installing fencing and gates
  • Cleaning and disinfecting the property throughout