§ Mr. Dafis
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many empty properties in the owner-occupied sector have been bought under the scheme outlined in the autumn statement by housing associations in each standard United Kingdom region; and how many such properties were repossessed homes in each instance.
§ Mr. Portillo
The information for England is provided in the following table:
Completed units Repossessed units Northern 584 25 Yorkshire and Humberside 1,376 89 East Midlands 1,376 104 East Anglia 801 33 South East 9,083 547 South West 1,533 127 West Midlands 1,583 62 North West 2,094 151 National Total 18,430 1,138
In Scotland 209 were purchased; none was a repossession.535W
In Wales a total of 1,198 properties were purchased, of which 95 were repossessions.
In Northern Ireland 743 empty properties were purchased of which:
- 141 were by Northern Ireland Housing Executive;
- 276 were by Northern Ireland Co-Ownership housing association and;
- 326 were by other housing associations.
Regional breakdowns for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and repossession figures for Northern Ireland, are not available centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. All the above figures are provisional at this stage and subject to normal end-year checking which may result in marginal adjustments to the final outturn.
§ Mr. Portillo
No; as my right hon. Friend said in his autumn statement last November, the housing market package was a time-limited measure, explicitly aimed at the overhang of empty properties in the over-occupied sector which was holding back activity in the housing market. The purchase of over 23,000 properties has achieved its desired result by providing a significant stimulus to activity.