Apply for an empty property grant

Grant applications

You can apply for a grant of up to £25,000 to make your empty property suitable to live in if:

  • the property is within the borough and it has been empty for at least six months
  • the property fails the Government’s decent homes standard
  • where the property is ex-council, someone has lived in it for at least five years since we sold it

The grant isn’t means tested, but if the grant does not cover everything needed you must be able to fund the cost of works not met by the grant. Once works are complete the property must be suitable for letting (in principle) via our Private Leasing Scheme.

We will take back the full grant if:

  • the property is sold within five years of the completion of the grant
  • or the grant conditions are breached

When applying for the grant you must also:

  • meet our standard rules for grant applicants (you will need to read our page ‘Grant applicants - standard rules and conditions’)
  • be willing and able to pay for essential work that isn’t covered by the grant
  • get permission for works from the freeholder, if needed
  • provide a copy of the specification and any drawings for the proposed works, which must then be agreed by us
  • meet our standards of renovation and get building control and planning consents as necessary
  • rent the property through our Private Leasing Scheme for five years after the work is done
  • not set rent above the ‘affordable rent level’

When making the renovations you must:

  • ensure the loft insulation is at least 270 millimetres deep
  • ensure the property has a central heating system with a programmer and thermostatic radiator valves
  • ensure that any new gas boiler for the central heating is A’ rated under SEDBUK (Seasonal Efficiency of Domestic Boilers in the UK)
  • ensure any cavity walls are insulated
  • ensure any external walls are dry lined internally and insulated with boards
  • install low energy bulbs in all permanent light fittings
  • install double glazed windows - if the windows needs replacing
  • install a dual volume flush toilet - if the toilet is being replaced
  • provide a water butt in if the property has a garden
  • provide smoke alarms which are wired into the mains on each floor (single point battery operated smoke detectors aren’t acceptable. British Standard 5839-6 2004)
  • install a carbon monoxide detector that meets current UL 2034 or CSA 6.19 safety standards if the property has gas appliances
  • be or become an accredited landlord through a scheme approved by us (the cost can be included in the grant)

How to apply

Contact us to discuss applying for an empty property grant.

Last Modified: 07/05/2020 16:15:34

Housing Contact Centre

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Address: Guildhall 2
High Street
Kingston upon Thames

Telephone: 0208 547 5003