PROPERTIES left to go to rack and ruin face being taken over warn council chiefs.
It comes after Stratford District Council secured the first ever so-called Interim Empty Dwelling Management Order (EDMO) in Warwickshire.
It means a long-term empty property close to Stratford town centre will now be brought back into use under the management of the district council.
Neighbours have complained for years the property is an eyesore and has a detrimental impact on their own properties.
But despite repeated efforts by the council to work with the owners, which involved offering a range of options to bring the property back into use, no agreement could be reached.
It prompted a lengthy legal process which resulted in the rarely awarded power which will see the council take over the management of the property for up to seven years.
While the owners retain ownership throughout the EDMO, the council can apply for an extension of the management order it is deemed the property would not be occupied, sold, or rented out.
District council empty property officer Sheree Johansen, who worked on the case, said: “While it still remains the district council’s preferred option to work with owners to bring their empty properties back into use, owners must now be aware that if they continue to leave their properties empty and fail to engage with the district council, their properties may also be at risk of similar enforcement action being taken against them.”
District housing spokesman Coun Peter Richards was pleased to see something finally being done with the house.
He added: “As a district council we are keen to rid the streets of the blight of empty properties, particularly when there is so much demand for housing, particularly affordable housing.
“I am delighted that this empty property will not only be bought back into use but will be used to house deserving local people.”