News story

Shutting the door to squatters

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Making homeowners as aware of their rights as those looking to take over their properties will help shut the door to squatters.

Stopping squatters guide

Housing Minister Grant Shapps has launched an online guide for homeowners setting out their rights and what to do if their property is invaded, so they can get their homes back as quickly as possible.

There are an estimated 20,000 squatters in the UK. Recent high profile examples of home owners who have fallen victim to squatters taking over their homes include Connan Gupta, whose home in Camberwell, South London, was taken over by squatters after he’d moved out while repairs were being made; and 72-year-old George Pope, whose home in Barking was taken over by squatters while he stayed with friends.

Grant Shapps said:

Recent high profile cases have served to illustrate the distress and misery that squatters can cause. I want to shut the door to squatters once and for all, and for homeowners to know their rights just as well as those looking to take over their properties. That’s why today I’m publishing advice making clear how the law is on their side, and that there are steps they can take to take back their home quickly and effectively.