A firm that buys derelict homes in London, refurbishes them and then sells them on the open market is rewarding individuals with a substantial finder’s fee if they tip them off about the location of suitable properties.
The company is Youspotproperty.com and a spokesman, Nick Kalms, has told BBC Radio 4 that his firm has refurbished properties for resale for a decade but has taken off by involving the public.
When a tip-off is given about a property that proves to be derelict, the individual identifying the home gets £20. The firm then tries to track down the owner and negotiate a purchase. If this happens and the home is then refurbished and sold, the ‘property spotter’ goes on to get a reward equivalent to one per cent of the purchase price paid by the firm.
BBC Radio 4 has also spoken with a ‘spotter’ who was paid £8,800 - one per cent of the £880,000 which Youspotproperty paid for a derelict home.
When the firm completes a successful sale it also donates £500 to a local charity based in the same borough as the property.
There are an estimated 200,000 homes in England alone which have been empty for six months or longer.