Houses in multiple occupation (HMO)

Licensing large houses in multiple occupation (HMO)

The scope of mandatory licensing has been extended to cover certain HMOs, including flats, occupied by five or more persons in two or more households, regardless of the number of storeys. The details are contained in the following document

If you manage a property coming under this new definition you must apply for a licence.

No additional or selective licensing schemes are currently in operation.

E: if you are not sure whether you require a HMO licence.

As the landlord you are responsible for applying for a licence and paying the appropriate fee. Failure to do so could result in an unlimited fine or civil penalty of up to £30,000.

Licences last five years so you are also responsible for renewing them.

Licence fees

The basic fee is £702 per licence.  If the licence holder is not the manager, an additional fee of £82 applies.

If you need assistance with your application, or you submit an incomplete application which causes us extra time to process, the total fee is £864 per licence.

If you apply for more than one HMO licence at the same time, a reduction of £82 applies to the second property and those thereafter.

All fees are non-refundable.

Licence conditions

When a licence is issued it comes with conditions you must meet to ensure certain standards are maintained. It will also tell you how many tenants can occupy the property at any one time.

If you fail to meet the conditions of the licence or allow the property to be occupied by more tenants than the licence allows, you could face an unlimited fine in the Courts.  Alternatively the Council can impose civil penalties of up to £30,000.

How to apply

To apply for your HMO licence download and complete the HMO licence application form

PDF icon HMO licence application form

Next, fill in the application form on your computer.

When you have completed your application form and have all your supporting documents ready, register or login to the HMO licensing portal to submit them. 

You must read the following documents before filling in the form

 PDF icon Information for applicants 

You must include the following documents with your application

  • Electrical installation condition report (EICR) issued within the last five years
  • Landlord's Gas Safety record issued within the last 12 months, if the property has gas
  • Fire risk assessment, if one has been undertaken
  • Maintenance and inspection reports for fire precautions equipment (where grade A fire alarm systems and emergency lighting is installed in the property)
  • Floor plans that accurately reflect the layout of the property
  • The floor plans must be annotated to show the location of basic facilities such as baths, toilets, wash hand basins etc., and the location of fire precaution equipment
  • The floor plans must show accurate measurements of individual rooms so we can calculate floor space and determine how many people the property is suitable for. Any areas of rooms where the ceiling height is below 1.5 metres must be marked on the floor plan

If you need help using there is a user guide available

PDF icon HMO licensing portal user guide

PDF icon HMO licence register

Tacit consent

Tacit consent is where the applicant can act as though the licence is granted if they have not heard from us. This does not apply to HMO licensing.

Get in touch about private sector housing

The quickest way to contact us is by using our online forms which are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you need to speak to us give us a call during office hours and talk to our Customer Services team who will be happy to help.

HMO licence public register

The Housing Act 2004 requires us to maintain a public register of all premises in the borough licensed as houses in multiple occupation (HMOs).

HMO licence public register
Two houses