This, says the Mayor's office, means that he is on course to meet his manifesto pledge to invest a total of £60million new funding to bring over 3,400 empty homes back into use by 2011. London boroughs have now received over £39 million from the Mayor and he has promised a further £21 million in 2010/11 to fund a range of practical measures to encourage owners to repair and bring their homes back into use. The Mayor’s aim is to reduce the proportion of long-term empty homes in the capital to one per cent.
The Mayor said: “In the last housing market downturn of the 1990s, the number of empty homes soared. Leaving homes empty when so many people are seeking housing is unacceptable and abandoned buildings can blight neighbourhoods, attracting vandalism and creating local eyesores".
“Today's package delivers an unprecedented level of funding to tackle the capital's empty homes, more than tripling the previous budget. Working with London's boroughs, this investment will help to significantly improve London's housing stock.”
London Councils’ Executive Member for Housing, Councillor Steve Reed, said: “This funding will support London boroughs in their efforts to bring large numbers of empty homes back into service, and give fuel to their drive to improve standards across their housing stock. It will make a real difference to our tenants.”