Houses of Multiple Occupation (HMO)
What is a House of Multiple Occupation, or HMO as they are better known?
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 directly, or contact the Private Sector Housing Team for further advice:
Tel +44 (0)1895 266187
Private Sector Housing Team
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.
Tenancy Deposit Protection
Since April 2007, all new deposits taken in respect of letting out your property must be protected in a government approved Deposit Scheme.
Full details regarding the schemes can be obtained through the Communities and Local Government website.
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.Schedule of works (maisonettes)
Schedule of works (semi-detached and terraced houses)
Schedule of works (three storey properties and HMOs)
Head Lease Scheme booklet
Landlords advertising form