In todays climate purchasing a house may seem like a near impossible task. With inflation and cost of living rising, properties as well as everything else is getting extortionate. Often, first time buyers will find a run down property in desperate need of some TLC to renovate, buying at a much lower cost than similar houses. However, these run down properties are not easy to come by. So where are all the abandoned and empty properties?
Habitat for Humanity Great Britain has estimated that local authorities in England, Scotland and Wales possess enough empty commercial property to generate in excess of 19,500 homes. The charity, which renovates disused council-owned properties into affordable housing, suggested at an event in London that over 7,000 local authority-owned commercial and business properties were vacant for 12 months in 2020, equating to an average of 18 properties per council. Experts estimate that this space could be used for over 16,000 residential units from converting office space and 3,500 units from transforming empty retail space.
Why are properties left empty?
Empty properties can occur for an array of reasons. Often it is because the owner has passed away leaving a property. The estate and probate are usually handled by a family member, since they will be the ones inheriting the estate. However, there are large numbers of estates which go unclaimed due to the deceased having no known relatives or becoming estranged from their family.
How we find probate properties
Councils refer many of these deceased property owners to bona vacantia. Here, probate researchers, like ourselves, can research the deceased and find out whether they own their properties. This is a primary source for finding probate properties as councils often do not have the means and resources to deal with so many deceased estates. This also leads to direct referrals from councils who wish to cut out the middle man of the Bona Vacantia.
How we can help
Blanchards are experts in dealing with probate properties. Leaving empty properties for a long time can cause a variety of problems. This includes vermin, trespassers, squatters and damage to the property. The longer a property is left the more damage and problems it will amass over time. If left, the damage can become extremely expensive to rectify, if it is even possible at that point.
After we have contacted the beneficiaries to these estates, we have rights to access the properties and provide a full clearance and deep clean. The house can go to auction or on the market once the probate process is completed. Once sold, the house will be back in use.
With this, families or property developers can rejuvenate said property, resurrecting it from its empty and decrepit state. This is boosts not only the look of the surrounding area but also potentially the value or surrounding properties. Furthermore, it will alleviate the issues which amass with probate and empty properties.
Refer your empty properties
In conclusion, If you are a legal professional or member of the public sector dealing with empty properties, Blanchards are your solution. The biggest blockade when it comes to dealing with these probate properties is the fact that there are heirs who now legally inherit the property but don’t know or are unable to be located. This is where our expertise in beneficiary tracing saves the day. Furthermore, Blanchards clean, clear, handle the entire administration process and ensure the sale of the property. We ARE the solution to probate properties.