§ Mr. Hendry
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many local authority-owned houses were empty at the last date at which figures were available; what information he has on the length of time they had been vacant; what is his estimate of the rent forgone for each local authority during the last year for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Baldry
At 1 April 1992 the number of local authority owned properties in England that were empty and available for letting, either immediately or after minor works—that is, excluding dwellings awaiting major works or due to be sold or demolished—was 40,400, representing 1.1 per cent. of all local authority dwellings.
The available information on the length of time these dwellings had been vacant is as follows:
Time vacant Number of dwellings vacant Three weeks or less 15,400 Over three weeks but not more than six weeks 8,900 Over six weeks but not more than six months 10,600 Over six months but not more than one year 2,400 Over one year 3,200 Total 40,400
The number of empty local authority dwellings available for letting, either immediately or after minor works fell substantially between April 1990, when it stood at 51,500–1.3 per cent. of all dwellings—and April 1992 as a result of improved management performance by local authorities.
Estimates are not compiled centrally of the rent forgone while dwellings are vacant.