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More than £2m spent on repairing empty council houses in Flintshire last year

NOTE: This content is old - Published: Monday, Jul 16th, 2018.

More than £2m has been spent on bringing empty council homes in Flintshire back into use last year.

Flintshire Council paid approximately £2.3m to bring its vacant social houses back to an appropriate standard for new tenants in the last 12 months.

Currently up to 500 of its 7,200 rental properties become available each year, and the authority is now preparing to put new guidelines in place for how it selects builders to carry out the improvement works.

Chief officer for housing and assets, Neal Cockerton, said the agreed payment rates are shortly due to lapse and need renewing. He said:

“The voids team utilise contractors for works to empty properties that is unable to be resourced or delivered via the direct work force.

“The repairs and maintenance team also utilise these contractors when works are either too large or complex to manage.

“The council experiences 400-500 void properties per year and, overall, the cost of bringing these back into a ‘lettable’ standard equates to approximately £2,300,000 per year.

The total value for the framework period is an estimated £11,500,000.

“The most economically advantageous tenderer, based on price and quality will be allocated work as first choice and this will continue unless the client feels the tenderer’s financial threshold is exceeded.”

The council’s cabinet will be asked to agree on the new framework at a meeting tomorrow, Tuesday 17 July.

It comes after neighbouring Wrexham Council admitted earlier this month that the external contractors it uses are struggling to keep up with the rate of repairs needed.

The authority launched a drive to try and improve the quality of accommodation it lets out, but said empty properties had gone up to 281 as they failed to keep pace.

By Liam Randall – Local Democracy Reporter.

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