What is an HMO?
Under the changes in the Housing Act 2004, the following types of building are Houses or Flats in Multiple Occupation:
- An entire house or flat which is let to three or more tenants who form two or more households, and who share a kitchen, bathroom or toilet
- A house which has been converted into bedsits or other non self-contained accommodation, and which is let to three or more tenants who form two or more households, and who share kitchen, bathroom or toilet facilities
- A converted house which contains one or more flats which are not wholly self contained (ie the flat does not contain within it a kitchen, bathroom or toilet) and which is occupied by three or more tenants who form two or more households
- A building which is converted entirely into self contained flats, but the conversion did not meet the standards of the 1991 Building Regulations, and less than two thirds of the flats are owner occupied
To be an HMO, the property must be used as the tenants' only or main residence, and it should be used solely or mainly to house tenants. Properties let to students and migrant workers will be treated as their only or main residence, and the same will apply to properties which are used as domestic refuges.
The HMO definition is commonly associated with shared accommodation, where separate unrelated households have to share a kitchen, bathroom or toilet. However, many are unaware that many buildings that have been converted into self contained flats are also considered to be HMOs under the Housing Act 2004. The HMO definition applies where the conversion to self contained flats did not, and still does not, meet the 1991 Building Regulations, and less than 2 thirds of the flats are owner occupied.
If you are a freeholder or manager of a property that meets the above description, you should be aware that as an HMO, it is covered by Management Regulations, and may also be licensable under the Council’s new Additional Licensing Scheme. Please refer to Is my property licensable? for further details.
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
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