No Use Empty, Kent County Council’s award-winning empty homes initiative has announced a new £12 million fund to bring derelict sites back to life.
The scheme provides loans to developers to bring derelict land and empty homes back into use. No Use Empty already has several new projects in the pipeline in Dover, Folkestone and Ramsgate and considerable interest in new build projects on derelict land.
Kent County Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Development Mike Whiting said: “With the UK experiencing challenging times and the impact facing the construction industry, initiatives such as No Use Empty are becoming increasingly important.
“I’m pleased to have secured this substantial additional money for the scheme, offering short-term finance to those wanting to bring derelict sites into use for new homes. This will further support the Kent economy as well as allowing us to regenerate local communities.
“The construction industry sustains thousands of people in various roles and associated sectors, boosting the Kent economy. No Use Empty offers interest free loans of up to £175,000 to those wishing to revive long term empty properties and it operates across all 12 authorities in Kent.
“We have provided £33.7 million in short term secured loans, which has levered £33.3 million of additional public and private sector finance, making a total investment of £67 million.
“Since No Use Empty launched in 2005 it has returned 6,326 homes back into use and this additional £12 million investment by Kent County Council is a tremendous boost to the scheme. “
Programme Manager for No Use Empty at Kent County Council Steve Grimshaw said: “Last financial year was exceptionally busy and there does not appear a dip in demand.
“With cross-county support and several districts providing additional funds for No Use Empty to administer, the scheme continues to diversify.”
With the construction industry now returning to work in a safe and structured way, No Use Empty is ready to administer loan applications and help Kent’s economy recover as well as delivering the homes required, whether it’s a refurbished empty property or a new build