Hundreds of empty homes in one city could be brought back into use.
Worcester has empty homes and a housing shortage
Worcester City Council is giving owners of empty houses advice on how to use them to give people a home.
The council said there are 749 empty homes in Worcester, while there is a shortage of affordable housing, and it wants them opened back up to residents.
The council strategy is to "encourage responsible ownership" which could lead to the offer of grant assistance to help with repairs.
It plans to contact people who own empty properties with information and advice on how to deal with the issue over the next 12 months.
"Our aim is to tackle the city's housing shortage and look after the environment we all live in," said Louise Gittins, empty homes officer.
"Being a neighbour of an empty home can be distressing for people, especially if the property is in disrepair or affects adjacent homes.
"There is a legitimate public interest in ensuring empty homes do not have an undue impact on the local community."
The council could ultimately issue an Empty Dwelling Management Order to allow it to take over a home which has fallen into disrepair.