Islington Council Consultation on its plans to control “Buy to Leave”

Islington Council is pressing ahead with a further consultation on its plans to control “Buy to Leave”

From Friday 15 May 2015 until Monday 15 June 2015 the council would like to get people’s views on the Preventing Wasted Housing Supply revised draft SPD. The SPD proposes to take measures through the use of legal agreements (known as Section 106 agreements) to ensure that new-build housing in major developments is not left unoccupied and can therefore contribute to meeting Islington’s and London’s housing needs.

The Council’s paperwork can be found here:

Comments should be sent in to:
By email:
In writing: Freepost, RSEA-CUHA-YYAS, Planning Policy, Islington Council, 222 Upper Street, London N1 1XR

It’s an attempt to rein in the buy to leave purchases which are particularly prevalent in the south of the borough, where property is bought simply as a way to stash cash, and not even rented out. Much of it is new build and for this type of buyer, as soon as the property is inhabited, apparently it loses value, like a new car driven out of the showroom. For this we are getting the 200-odd new towers across our skyline because they particularly like apartments. Empty properties are a complete waste of resources for existing residents and businesses in Islington (and London) and given the pressure on London housing should be brought back into use. Hopefully the Council will be able to proceed with its plan.

It seems much of the converted Whittington House opposite the end of Hargrave Road was sold overseas, and it is expected the same will apply to the conversion of the big blue and white block at Archway – Hill House. Both are of property at below London Plan stipulated sizes, so given another 20 years likely to end up close to slum unless something very unexpected intervenes.