Action on Empty Homes was established in 1992 to try to ensure that empty homes in England are brought back into use for those in housing need.

We have built our reputation not only as campaigners but in developing practical ideas on how to bring empty homes back into use. These ideas have been adopted as national policy and also local practice. Our track record of campaigning has put the charity in a good position to influence decision-makers and to do more to tackle the waste of empty homes in England.

Our focus is on ensuring empty homes are brought back into use for those priced out of decent housing across England or in housing need, for example, due to disability or long-term health problems.

Our influence has been enhanced over the last two decades through building our reputation as the 'go to' place for media comment, as well as for a thorough analysis of both the causes of empty homes and what works in bringing them back into use.

Since 2000, Action on Empty Homes has played a significant role in campaigning to ensure:

  • Removing automatic Council Tax discounts on empty properties (from 2013).
  • Councils being able to charge more Council Tax on empty homes (from 2013).
  • Government funding of empty homes schemes from 2011-2015.
  • The New Homes Bonus being applied to long-term empty properties returned to use (2010).
  • The reduction of the rate of VAT charged on empty homes renovation work (from 2007).
  • The creation of Empty Dwelling Management Order (EDMO) powers for councils to tackle long-term empty homes (from 2004).