Large council house stands empty for FIVE YEARS on Milton Keynes estate

As thousands of people in MK struggle to afford a suitable rental home, the Citizen can reveal a family-sized council house had been empty and boarded up for more than five years on one estate.

By Sally Murrer
Wednesday, 25th May 2022, 1:41 pm
Updated Wednesday, 25th May 2022, 2:11 pm

The three or four bedroom link-detached home, complete with a garage, is almost hidden by overgrown greenery in the front garden.

It is in Padstow Avenue, a quiet area of Fishermead.

The last tenant left more than five years ago, say other residents, and the property has been boarded up ever since.

The house is obscured by the badly-overgrown greenery in the front garden

It was discovered by a man desperately looking for somewhere for himself and his family to live after receiving notice to quit their privately rented home.

He said: “We are in the middle of trying to find somewhere to rent as the property that we are in is being sold. We got in touch with MK council and they told us there are no council houses available."

“But then I found this council-owned house that has been boarded up for a number of years. Instead of renting it out, it seems the council would rather leave it empty – when so many people are looking for something stable that they can call their own.”

The man added: “I’m not asking for them to pay the rent. I’ll happily pay the rent the bills and council tax..I’m just asking for help with renting the property from them.

The house is all boarded up

“I have spoken to the neighbours and they can confirm that it has been vacant for over five years.”

The Citizen asked MK Council why the property had been empty for so long.

A spokesman told us: “The previous occupant of this property carried out some unauthorised work, which meant we couldn’t let it out due to structural issues. There’s also legal issues that have been ongoing as a result.”

He added: “This has now been completed. We expect works to be carried out in the coming months to bring the property back into use.”

A report last November showed there were almost 2,000 ‘long term’ empty homes in MK, despite the housing crisis. Most of these were privately owned.

Of these, 108 had been abandoned for more than two years and 1,844 had been empty for six months or more.

You can report an empty property to MK Council here.