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Housing

Volume 458: debated on Monday 26 March 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many long-term empty private sector properties there were in (a) rural and (b) non-rural areas in each year since 1980; what each figure represents (i) per 1,000 of the population and (ii) per 1,000 households; and if she will make a statement. (118697)

Information on long term private vacancies (over six months) is only available on a consistent basis back to the year 2000.

Long term vacancies are tabulated below by urban and rural local authorities:

Long term private vacancies (over six months) by urban and rural local authorities1

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Total number of private vacant dwellings

Rural

91,300

108,100

104,500

108,500

92,300

108,300

93,300

Urban

187,600

202,100

203,300

199,900

205,400

179,800

195,500

Total

278,900

310,200

307,800

308,400

297,700

288,100

288,300

Number of private vacant dwellings per 1,000 households2

Rural

12

14

14

14

12

14

12

Urban

15

15

15

15

15

13

14

Total

14

15

15

15

14

14

13

Number of private vacant dwellings per 1,000 population2

Rural

5

6

6

6

5

6

5

Urban

6

6

6

6

6

6

6

Total

6

6

6

6

6

6

6

1 Based on the DEFRA rural definition (2004). 2 2003 household/population projections and estimates. Source: Housing Strategy Statistical Appendix

Since long term private vacancies are not available on a consistent basis prior to 2000, total private vacancies (long and short term) are tabulated in the following table by urban and rural local authorities every five years since 1981 to provide a long term view. The table shows that the number of private vacant dwellings per 1,000 households in rural local authorities has fallen since 1991, with a larger fall between 1996 and 2006. Vacancy rates have also fallen in urban areas since 1996.

Total private vacancies (long and short term) by urban and rural local authorities1

1981

1986

1991

1996

2001

2006

Total number of private vacant dwellings

Rural

198,900

206,300

241,800

239,500

219,900

204,700

Urban

307,000

348,700

396,400

427,800

402,700

381,100

Total

505,900

554,800

638,200

667,300

622,600

585,900

Number of private vacant dwellings per 1,000 household2

Rural

34

33

36

34

30

26

Urban

27

30

32

34

31

28

Total

29

31

33

34

30

27

Number of private vacant dwellings per 1,000 population2

Rural

12

12

14

14

12

11

Urban

10

11

13

14

13

12

Total

11

12

13

14

13

12

1 Based on the DEFRA rural definition (2004) 2 2003 Household/Population Projections and Estimates Source: Housing strategy statistical appendix

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government for what areas housing targets have been set; what target has been set for each area; and what the (a) size and (b) population is of each area. (125875)

Regional spatial strategies include housing provision figures for constituent housing market and local planning authority areas for each region, except in London, where they are set out in the spatial development strategy (The London Plan). All regional spatial strategies are currently in the process of being revised.