Monday, July 03, 2006

Kevin McLeod on EDMOs

I like Kevin Mcleod. He is an “A” list TV presenter and his shows are amongst the best property shows on television. But in his regular column in the Sunday Times yesterday he was not on top form.

"On a Friday teatime, when everybody in Westminster was already on the train home and everyone else was watching the World Cup" Friday 16th June - it was Angola v Mexico on at the time
"Kelly’s department quietly outlined details of a strategy, dreamed up by John Prescott in 2004, that allows local authorities to seize houses lying empty.”


So if, for example, you’re in the unhappy position of having lost an elderly relative and are in the process of dividing up the estate, the chances are that, if you don’t get a move on, you might find your relative’s house suddenly occupied by a family from the social housing list.”


Or there again, if your auntie dies in September and you think you would like to wait for the spring upturn in the housing market before selling her place, I’d think again.”

These examples like every other one I have seen thought up by newspaper columnists these last couple of weeks actually prove the opposite of what they are trying to say. Both these cases would actually be exempt from EDMOs. In the case of the bereavements the property would be exempt whilst probate is sorted out (however long that took) and for a further 6 months after that. So no need to hurry up. In the second case the property would be exempt for the probate plus 6months and then if the owner was intending to sell exempt again. Admittedly Mcleod acknowledges the blight caused by empty homes and concedes that that “The intention behind the scheme is admirable.” But unfortunately like many other columnists on this issue he has merely recycled inaccurate reports from other newspapers.


  1. Andrew Vickers5 July 2006 at 14:42

    I read that article and I got equally frustrated, but my spirits were lifted when I read the truth behind the "Derby Rates Rebel" story on Miss(L)Rooney in the same paper.

  2. It's a good point Andrew, the article was one of two which highlightted empty homes. The other wa the story of Mrs Rooney (no relation to him!) the woman from Derby who has been in the news a lot recently for refusing to pay her council tax. One of her issues is the effect of empty homes on her quality of life.