The government is extending the mandatory HMO licensing scheme to cover properties occupied by five or more people making up two or more households.

This includes any HMO which is a building or a converted flat where such householders lack or share basic amenities such as a toilet, personal washing facilities or cooking facilities Any landlord or agent whose HMO is required to be licensed under the new rules must return a completed application before the 1 October 2018, and failure to apply for licenses by this date is a criminal offence. As part of the extension to mandatory HMO licensing a minimum room size for bedrooms is being introduced in addition to mandatory licence conditions relating to the refuse disposal and storage facilities in licensed HMOs. 

The Regulations available here:     


This is with the exception of the following:

  • Section 257 HMOs where a building has been converted into self contained flats that do not meet the 1991 Building Regulations and less than 2/3rds are owner occupied
  • Buildings managed by educational establishments, registered social landlords, police, a health authority or regulated by other legislation such as residential care homes
  • Buildings occupied by religious communities.

Mandatory HMO licensing aims to raise standards of accommodation in the private rented sector and to ensure that these properties have a decent minimum standard of management.

For a licence to be granted we must be satisfied that:

  • The proposed licence holder and any manager of the property is a fit and proper person.
  • Property management standards are being applied at the property.
  • The HMO is reasonably suitable, or can be made suitable, for occupation by the number of tenants allowed under the licence.  As part of this process we consider the number, type and quality of bathrooms, toilets and cooking facilities available for the occupants.

If an HMO is operated without a licence, the person having control of, or the person managing the dwelling is liable on conviction, for a unlimited fine.

Landlords must apply to us for a licence. For further information please phone us on 01395 571572 or email us