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Welsh property markets sitting empty thanks to second homeowners

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A sizable proportion of property stock in Wales is sitting empty due to an influx of second homeowners, research from Alan Boswell Landlord Building Insurance shows.

Gwynedd is north west Wales has the most empty properties in the whole of the UK, with 5,286 per 100,000 people.

And another Welsh county has the third most in Pembrokeshire, south west Wales, which has 4,331 per 100,000 standing vacant.

Ceredigion in west Wales is the fifth worst, with 3,595.

Alan Boswell Landlord Building Insurance blamed the results on an influx of holiday homeowners.

Indeed, three quarters (74%) of Pembrokeshire’s vacant properties belong to people with second homes.

Make Drakeford, First Minister of Wales, said: “Tourism is vital to our economy.

“But having too many holiday properties and second homes, which are empty for much of the year, does not make for healthy local communities and prices people out of the local housing market.

“There is no single, simple solution to these issues.”

So far the Welsh government has handed councils powers to increase council tax premiums on second and empty homes, while operators now have to make more of a financial contribution to their local communities.

Outside Wales Argyll and Bute in Scotland has the most stock sitting empty, at 4,887 per 100,000 people.