Wanted - five tenants to become “property guardians” and live in a revitalised Hartlepool building for a cut-price rate.
A property management agency has restored The Link in Lealholm Road to its former glory and is now offering it as a place to live for around £150 a month.
The building used to be two semi-detached houses and was then converted into one building before becoming office space and then a nursery.
But it stood empty for more than 18 months before it was handed over to Ad Hoc Property Management.
Regional guardian manager Nikki Murtaugh said: “We are a flexible solution for a property owner to secure an otherwise vacant property.
“Whatever the reason is for a building being vacant, we offer a flexible solution.
“We move people in and the guardians live on a flexible licence agreement.”
For the guardians, it is a chance to enjoy low-cost accommodation. For the building owner, there’s the reassurance of having on-site security, a presence, and any maintenance issues can be identified, said Nikki.
He is now on the lookout for up to five tenants to move in on a reduced rate which includes all bills such as water, gas and electric as well as council tax.
“The Link is two former semi-detached houses converted and made as one whole property as a stand alone property which was more recently office space and a nursery centre.
“It has been vacant for more than 18 months and was causing an issue for the local authority. They have come to us for a solution through presence.”
He said the empty building had become an issue because of fly tipping and children getting on to the roof and in the back garden - causing problems for neighbours.
But now Ad Hoc has made it ready for people to move into, said Nikki.
“I have a site and I want to get people through the door pre-Christmas. The holidays are always a concern for building owners.”
Rooms at The Link would be offered from £150 for calendar month, said Nikki, and up to 5 guardians would be taken on.
The 25-year-old Dutch company already accommodates around 2,500 guardians nationally and its business in North East England is flourishing.
Guardians are living in everything from former police stations and fire stations to a £13 million mansion.
Ad Hoc takes on vacant buildings to ensure they are protected. And by using “property guardians”, it means buildings are not left to become derelict, but instead provide affordable accommodation to responsible, working people.
Nikki said: “It can be anything that can be made safe, secure and habitable. We make sure all the electrics, gas and safety certificates are in place.”