Second homes, holiday lets and empty properties : Empty properties

The census collects information about all residential properties and the people who live in them.

If there's no one currently living or staying at this address, you may still need to answer a few questions about this property.

If you know someone who lived alone, but died on or around 21 March 2021, you don't need to worry about their form, and you don't need to let us know.

Residential property

If you own a property and there's no one currently living there, you still need to return a census form for that address. This could include a second property, such as a holiday home.

Read more about second properties

Important information:

What you need to do

  1. Complete the questions about the accommodation as best you can.
  2. If you were visiting overnight on Sunday 21 March 2021, complete the Visitor questions.
  3. Return the census form by post.

If the property has received a paper questionnaire, please fill it in. If it has not, please contact us to order one.

Non-residential property

Unless someone was living or staying in this non-residential property overnight on Sunday 21 March 2021, you don't need to fill in a form for this address. A non-residential property could be an office, shop, factory or other premises that people aren't meant to live in.

If you've received a census letter at an address where people don't usually live, please mark it "Return to sender" and put it back in the post. A census officer may visit, but just let them know it's a non-residential property.

Building or converting a property

If you're building or converting a property but haven't moved in yet, you may still need to fill in a census form for it.

  • If the property is ready to live in, please fill in a census form about the accommodation only.
  • If the property is not yet ready to live in, you don't need to fill in a census form for it.
  • If you're living in temporary accommodation on the property while you're building it, for example in a tent, caravan or shed, you still need to fill in a census form for the accommodation you're living in.