Houses in multiple occupation (HMO) licensing

Find out whether you need an HMO licence for your property and how to apply.

You must have a licence if:

  • you rent a property to 5 or more people from 2 or more households
  • your tenants do not all belong to the same family or household
  • your tenants share a toilet, bathroom, living room or kitchen

It is a criminal offence to have control of, or manage a licensable HMO without having made an application to the council.

You can find more information about renting out your property - houses in multiple occupation (HMO) from the government's website.

Standards for HMOs

All properties must meet minimum standards for HMOs which are detailed in our HMO standards leaflet [pdf] 823KB

How to apply for a new HMO licence

After selecting the green button below you’ll need to:

  1. Have a credit or debit card for payment of the fee
  2. Create an account if you do not already have one
  3. Select Licensing and Apply for a licence from the left hand menu
  4. Select HMO licence
  5. Select New licence
  6. Select New HMO Mandatory
  7. Then follow the onscreen instructions to complete the application

Apply for a new HMO licence

Risk assessment

Once an application is received, we carry out a Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) risk assessment on your HMO. If our inspector finds any unacceptable risks during the assessment you must carry out work to remove them.

What happens next

Once your application is approved we will send you a draft licence. This will give you the opportunity to question the conditions we have put on your licence. This is called the consultation period.

Once the consultation period is finished. The issue fee (part 2) needs to be paid. The full licence will then be issued to you.

Licence conditions

Your HMO licence will contain a number of conditions, including:

  • fire safety regulations
  • kitchen facilities requirements
  • property heating requirements
  • bathroom facility requirements

You must read the conditions supplied with your licence to make sure you comply with them within the timescale stated. If you do not comply with your licence conditions, you will be breaking the law.

Renewing your HMO licence

An HMO licence is valid for 5 years.

You must renew your licence before it runs out. You should apply at least 2 months before it expires to give time to process your application.

How to apply to renew an HMO licence

After selecting the green button below you’ll need to:

  1. Have a credit or debit card for payment of the fee
  2. Create an account if you do not already have one
  3. Select Licensing and Apply for a licence from the left hand menu
  4. Select HMO licence
  5. Select Renewal licence
  6. Select Renewal HMO Mandatory
  7. Then follow the onscreen instructions to complete the application

Apply to renew an HMO licence

Check if a property is licensed

We keep a public register of all properties that have an HMO licence including the name of the landlord.

If you live in an HMO you can check if your landlords property is licensed by checking the public register (select ‘Licence type’ of HMO Mandatory).

If your landlord is renting out an HMO without a licence you can reclaim the rent you have paid to them.