Houses in multiple occupation

A House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) can be:

  • A shared house occupied by more than one household
  • A house divided into bedsits that is occupied by more than one household
  • An individual flat occupied by more than one household

Situations considered to be a household:

  • Couples that are married or in a civil partnership
  • Relatives living together, including parents, grandparents, children (and step children), grandchildren, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces or cousins
  • Half relatives are treated as full relatives
  • A foster child living with his foster parent 

HMO licensing requirements:

  • All HMOs that have five or more persons forming two or more households must be licensed 
  • Bedrooms occupied by a single adult must have at least 6.51 sq. m floor area
  • Bedrooms occupied by a couple must have at least 10.22 sq. m floor area
  • No room under 4.64 sq. m can be used as a bedroom by any person 

HMO licensing

To apply for a HMO license, complete the application form and return it with all the required supporting documentation and fees.

Any landlord operating a licensable HMO without a licence will be:

  • Committing a criminal offence
  • Liable for a fine up to £20,000 on successful prosecution, or a civil penalty of up to £30,000

Use our HMO reporting form to report a landlord you suspect of operating without a licence. 

We are legally obliged to collect and publish a register of HMO licences we have issued. This information is updated on a quarterly basis.