Glasgow City Council has issued a compulsory purchase order (CPO) for seven apartments in Westmoreland Street, Govanhill. This move will mark the first time landlords will be forced to sell because they have failed to keep the property in an acceptable condition, and will be the first time a whole block with residents will be taken over under compulsory purchase in Glasgow.
It has been reported that at least three of the flats are occupied, with several children living in the houses. Under the plans, any existing tenants will be offered to be rehoused once Govanhill Housing Association has assessed their needs.
Action has already been taken in a bid to force landlords to either make improvements to their properties or sell up. Three private owners have been removed from the landlords register, another property has been deemed below acceptable standards, and another has been boarded up to prevent illegal occupation.
Richard Brown, executive director of regeneration, said in a report requesting the CPO process to be approved that:
“The condition of this building has been an ongoing cause for concern with the council using its full range of statutory powers to first repair the building then impose a maintenance plan on the owners.
“When this failed Govanhill Housing Association targeted the acquisition of all the flats, managing to only acquire flat 1/1 on a voluntary basis in July 2017.”
The report also noted that the remaining private landlords have not maintained the communal close and there were reports of anti-social behaviour within the flats and the surrounding common areas.
A council spokesman explained that the owners “will have the right to apply for compensation at market value if they do not agree to sell on a voluntary basis, which they can do so at any stage of the CPO process.”