How To Protect Empty Properties

According to a recent report from the Empty Homes Agency there are an estimated 600,000 unoccupied homes in England

Some of the common reasons why empty properties are at risk.

Theft: Empty properties are particularly vulnerable to thieves even if the building is completely empty of all it's contents. Pipework, copper and slate still have a value and are expensive to replace.

Vandalism: Empty buildings are easy targets for vandals and given enough time they can cause significant damage.

Trespassing and Squatting: In 2012 a new law was introduced making squatting in a residential property a criminal offence but not so in commercial properties. The civil courts, high legal costs and time make evicting squatters from commercial buildings particularly difficult.

Weather and Flooding: Weather and water damage can wreak havoc on an unattended property.

How can you protect yourself?

There are some basic measures that you can take to lessen the risk. First carry out a simple risk assessment to cover the following:

How easy it is for intruders to gain entry and remain undetected?

Whether there is anything in the property likely to attract thieves, and how secure items are.

Whether there are any hazards or defects that could create a risk of injury to others.

Look at installing security measures as quickly as possible. Whether it is alarms, lighting, cameras, locks etc.

Keep up the general maintenance of the property.

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