House in multiple occupation (HMO) licence

Key changes to licensing →

From 1st October 2018 all properties occupied by five or more people, from two or more households and sharing an amenity will be subject to mandatory licensing irrespective of the number of storeys they contain. Find out more.

Renting out a house in multiple occupation (HMO) requires a licence if:

  • The house has three storeys or more (a storey is defined as any basement, attic or floor that is adapted for use as living accommodation. Mezzanine floors within buildings are included in this definition. Also, where living accommodation is situated above or below a business premises then each storey of the business premises is counted as a storey)
  • Five or more people who form two or more households occupy the house
  • Tenants share some amenities e.g. kitchen, bathroom and toilet.

If your current HMO licence has expired, or is due to expire, you must re-apply.

Licences are now issued for a period of 5 years.

The government have produced a guide for landlords that provides further information on mandatory HMO licensing.

Please be aware that you may require planning permission to convert your property to a house in multiple occupation.

Apply

You must ensure that the application form is completed correctly, full payment is made and all of the required supporting documents are included. 

You will need to provide a Basic Criminal Disclosure Certificate (external link), obtained within six months of the date of application. The application cannot be processed without this certificate.

Fees and Charges

New Application = £652.36

Renewal Application = £420.52

Properties with over 10 occupiers will pay an additional fee of £25.00.

Properties with over 20 occupiers will pay an additional fee of £50.00.

We cannot process your application until we are in receipt of the relevant payment.

What standards apply to HMOs?

There are two sets of management regulations applicable to HMOs:

This legislation places certain duties on the individuals managing the property and non compliance with these regulations may result in a prosecution and/or fine (including a civil penalty).

HMOs must also be free of significant hazards under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) and adhere to the Council's HMO Standards, which cover things like minimum room sizes, amenity standards and fire safety requirements.

Key changes to licensing from 1st October 2018

From 1st October 2018 all properties occupied by five or more people, from two or more households and sharing an amenity will be subject to mandatory licensing irrespective of the number of storeys they contain.

If you own or manage a property that meets these conditions it will need to be licensed.

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government have produced a guidance document (external link), which includes further details on extending mandatory licensing to smaller HMOs and introducing minimum bedroom sizes as the government continues to rebalance the relationship between tenants and landlords.

Do I need a Fire Risk Assessment for my HMO?

See the guide below for more information on whether you're required to carry out a fire risk assessment: 

Public Register

We must maintain a public register of all the premises licensed as a HMO, a copy of which is available below.

If you have any enquiries about a property which has been licensed or which you feel should be licensed and is not, please contact us.

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