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General information

Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO)

HMOs are houses which are occupied by more than two households and in which more than two households share an amenity (or the building lacks an amenity) such as a bathroom, toilet or cooking facilities.

In simple terms if you are renting out to more than two unrelated people, your property is an HMO and will need to comply under the Housing Act 2004.

If your property houses five or more people it is an HMO and is Licensable. You will therefore have to apply for a License from the Local Authority before you can rent it out.

For more details regarding Houses of Multiple Occupation and Licensing requirements please contact us or the Private Sector Housing Team for further advice:

 Housing Office Private Sector Housing Team 
Brunel University London
Civic Centre
High Street
Tel +44 (0)1895 266187
Fax +44 (0)1895 269799
Email housing-uxb@brunel.ac.uk
Tel +44 (0)1895 250189

Health and safety requirements

All HMOs must also comply with the Schedule of Works provided by the Private Sector Housing Team, which can be obtained directly from them at the Civic Centre (see the address above).

In addition, all properties must fulfill the following requirements:

  • All properties must have a current Landlords' Gas Safety Certificate, which should be undertaken by a Gas Safe Registered gas fitter. This is renewable on an annual basis.
  • All properties must have a current Electrical Periodic Inspection Report, which should be undertaken by an approved NICEIC electrician. This is renewable every five years or sooner if specified on the certificate.
  • All furniture and furnishings in the property need to satisfy the rules on fire safety, which came into effect on 1 March 1993. Beds and mattresses should carry fixed labels stating that they are fire resistant in accordance with BS7177. Sofas and armchairs need to carry a fixed label stating that they comply with the Furniture and Furnishings Regulations 1988. If you are unsure whether the furniture in your property complies, do not worry, as we will confirm this for you when we visit the property.
  • All properties should have mains wired and interlinked smoke alarms.
  • All properties must contain a fire extinguisher, which must be serviced on an annual basis.

Energy Performance Certificates

Since 1 October 2008, Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) are required on rented properties, which are not classed as HMO's. This would include studio's, one and two bedroom flats or houses which are occupied as family homes.

For further information, please see the CLG website.

Useful links

Schedule of works (maisonettes)
Schedule of works (semi-detached and terraced houses)
Schedule of works (three storey properties and HMOs)
Landlords advertising form
Head Lease Scheme booklet