Series 1 Episode 1
First Broadcast: 9PM Wed 7 December 2011

In this one-off special property expert Phil Spencer helps people worst affected by the current housing crisis to get a roof over their head for an opportunity to get their lives back on track.

In the current economic downturn, the UK's 'squeezed middle' is finding it increasingly difficult to make ends meet. Cutbacks and the recession also mean that homelessness has become a very real threat to thousands across the social spectrum.

Some experts say that many people find themselves only three steps removed from ending up without a roof over their head. Those who lose their job and separate from their partners can come perilously close, and it often only takes one more thing to go wrong - such as getting ill - and they end up on the street.

Phil meets two men who have ended up on the streets. He decides to target private house owners whose properties have been sitting empty for years, and attempt to persuade them to allow him to help them renovate, and then let, the property to the homeless.

Can he find the right property, persuade a private landlord to get involved and help get two men a roof over their heads before the onset of winter?

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Phil's Empty Homes Giveaway on Channel4.com

See more about Phil's Empty Homes Giveaway

As part of The Great British Property Scandal season, Phil Spencer meets some of the people worst affected by the UK housing crisis