Parliamentary committee to debate Scotland’s empty homes

The Scottish Parliament’s local government and communities committee will hold a debate today as part of its inquiry into empty homes in Scotland.

Parliamentary committee to debate Scotland's empty homes

The debate comes after the committee launched a report calling on the Scottish Government to fulfil its commitment and introduce compulsory sales orders to tackle the issue.

The report said it is unacceptable that the council tax levy, which allows local authorities to remove the discount on empty properties and charge a council tax increase of up to 100%, is being over-used by some councils.

The Scottish Government issued its response to the committee’s report last month.

The remit of the inquiry is as follows:

  • The extent of, and reasons for, empty homes in Scotland;
  • How effective existing legislation and policy is at addressing the problem of empty homes;
  • What more can be done to prevent homes remaining empty and to encourage owners to bring them back into use.

The committee is not looking at second homes as part of its inquiry, as these are seen to raise policy and public interest considerations that are distinct from empty homes.

The debate can be watched live on Parliament TV here.

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