If you are thinking of running a House in Multiple Occupation with five or more occupants in 2019 then it is likely that you will need a mandatory HMO Licence.

But what are the rules, how much does a HMO licence cost, and how long does one last?

There is still a lot of out of date articles on the web that list the old requirements – so make sure you are aware of the new rules in 2019 otherwise you could be on the end of a £30,000 fine.

Do I need a HMO licence?

Before October 2018 you only needed a licence if:-

  • the property is occupied by five or more individuals who are not all related to one another; and
  • the property has 3 storeys or more

However changes to the law that came into effect on 1 October 2018 removed the need for the property to be three or more storeys.

This means that any HMO occupied by 5 or more individuals (not all related to one another) will require an HMO licence.

The new regulations meant nearly 170,000 HMOs across the UK that were once exempt now needed a HMO licence.

New HMO room size regulation

There are also rules in place for minimum room sizes for all HMOs that require a mandatory licence.

Ensure you check your room sizes meet these requirements:-

  • Any bedroom must not be less than 4.64 square metres
  • Any bedroom used by one person aged over 10 years must not be less than 6.51 square metres.
  • Any bedroom used by two people aged over 10 years must not be less than 10.22 square metres.

How Much Does a HMO Licence Cost?

The cost of the licence varies considerably all over the UK so it is important to check with your local council for their costs and terms.

It’s also vital to do this before you put together your business plan to ensure the costs of the licence are covered in your rental income.

You can usually find the costs of your local authority’s HMO licence on their websites.

How long does a HMO licence last?

Normally a licence lasts for a maximum of five years.

The council may in some circumstances grant a licence for a shorter period if it considers it necessary.

Usually before the end of the licence period you will be required to apply for a new licence.


If you would like any help sourcing finance to fund a HMO project, drop us a line for an informal chat on 0161 913 2780 or email us here

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