OWNERS of empty and unused flats and homes in Cheshire West are being urged to let out their property and benefit from a financial offer as part of the Government’s plans to end homelessness.

The council has identified that there are about 4,000 empty homes across the borough and is calling on the owners of empty properties with one or two bedrooms to consider letting them out.

They would be occupied by people who are currently homeless in the Cheshire West and Chester area.

The council is initially looking to set up 25 tenancies in one or two-bedroom houses or flats.

The properties would be looked after by a new housing management service run by ForHousing, the council`s strategic housing partner.

There are many benefits to the property owners who choose to work with ForHousing:

• A 10 per cent management fee paid directly to the landlord.

• Property managed by a new Housing Management Service, run by ForHousing.

• Regular inspections of the property.

• Regular maintenance of the property.

• Person-centred, holistic support for the tenant.

Councillor Val Armstrong said: “People often find themselves in a situation, beyond their control, which results in them losing their home. They end up without a roof over their head and need temporary accommodation and help to find permanent housing.

“These circumstances can develop very quickly following relationship breakdown, unemployment, or emotional trauma, and these problems are becoming more common during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The council works to support people who have become homeless. However, it is difficult to help everyone as we have a shortage of available properties.

“We know there are thousands of empty homes out there which could be used for a good cause by providing a home for someone during a difficult time in their life.

“We have an attractive financial and management offer for owners who decide to let their property instead of leaving it sitting empty and unused. By letting out your property, you will benefit from this offer while also helping someone improve their personal situation.”

If you are a homeowner who would like more information on this, please contact Laura Rosenberg at ForHousing via email: laura.rosenberg@forhousing.co.uk or call on 07587 668616.