As a landlord, or freeholder of a licensable HMO, there are a number of standards and regulations you will need to comply with. Licensable HMOs are subject to regular inspections by the HMO Team, and during our inspections we will have regard to all of the following standards or enforcement measures:
Prescribed standards for HMOs
All licensed Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) must have amenities such as heating, washing facilities, kitchen facilities and toilets. The number and type of amenities required will depend on the type and size of the house.
In deciding whether an HMO is suitable for occupation by a certain number of persons or households, the Council must have regard to the Government’s Prescribed Standards, which are laid out in Schedule 3 of the Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation and Other Houses (Miscellaneous Provisions)(England) Regulations as amended by the Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (additional provisions)(England) Regulations 2007.
Download the current space and amenity standards:
All HMOs, whether licensable or not, must comply with Management Regulations. These are a specific set of regulations that impose duties on both the person having control of the HMO, and in some cases the persons occupying the HMO, and include the following:
- Maintenance of common parts, fixtures, fittings and appliances
- Maintenance of living accommodation
- Safety Measures
- Supply and maintenance of gas and electricity
- Provision of information for tenants
- Waste disposal facilities
Occupiers of HMOs have a duty to ensure that they take reasonable care to avoid damage and disrepair to the property, and do not act in such a way as to obstruct the manager in complying with any Management Regulation.
There are two distinct sets of management regulations, depending on the type of HMO concerned. These are:
Statutory Instrument No.372 (2006) – The Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (England) Regulations 2006
This set covers HMOs that contain shared accommodation, such as house shares, bedsits, hostels and guest houses and other non-self contained accommodation. These types of HMOs are defined under Section 254 of the Housing Act 2004.
Visit www.legislation.gov.uk - Regulations 2006 to read these regulations.
Statutory Instrument No.1903 (2007) – The Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation (Additional Provisions) (England) Regulations 2007
This set covers HMOs that are buildings converted into self contained flats. These types of HMOs are defined under Section 257 of the Housing Act 2004.
Visit www.legislation.gov.uk - Regulations 2007 to read these regulations.
When a licence is issued for an HMO, it will contain a schedule of conditions, which the licence holder and manager must comply with. These conditions will vary according to property type, but typically will impose the following:
- That supporting documents are provided, such as gas and electrical certificates, fire alarm test reports etc, at appropriate intervals or upon demand.
- That accommodation, common areas, and amenities are kept in good repair and in a safe condition
- That reasonable steps are taken to prevent or reduce antisocial behaviour at, or associated with, the property
Licensing Conditions may also require that additional facilities or amenities are provided, such as the installation of an additional bathroom, toilet or kitchen. They may also prohibit the use of specific rooms, such as specifying that a particular room may not be used as a sleeping room, if it is too small, or there are insufficient amenities available.
Housing Health and Safety rating system (HHSRS)
As with all residential properties, HMOs are subject to the HHSRS, which is the risk scoring system we use to assess whether there are deficiencies in a dwelling/occupancy unit that present a hazard to occupants. The system is broken down into 29 prescribed hazards, which cover a range of different issues such as excess cold, damp, fire and electrical safety, trips and falls, food hygiene, collision and entrapment etc. Where a sufficiently serious hazard is identified in a dwelling, the Council have a duty to take action to remedy such hazard(s), and will serve a statutory improvement notice enforcing that specified works are carried out to remove the hazards. In extreme cases, where there is imminent risk to the safety of occupants, the Council may take immediate remedial action, or even prohibit all or part of a building for habitation if necessary.
Houses in Multiple Occupation
- Report an empty home
- Report a rogue Landlord
- HMO enquiries
- Report housing disrepair
- I need landlord advice
- Report nuisance from another property
Got a question about housing and homes?01424 451100
CommentsThe content on this page is the responsibility of our Housing team.