La maison est vide depuis des années.


#1

Any explanation for the use of present tense in the french, and past in English?


#2

In French, we use “Présent de l’indicatif” (aka présent de généralité) because it is a fact, a general truth. The word “depuis” means that the fact is still in progress, still present.

In English, you will also use Present but a different one: Present Perfect which has the same purpose. To tell a fact that is still in progress.