three or more unrelated people live there as at least 2 separate households – for example, 3 single people with their own rooms, or 2 couples each sharing a room
the people living there share basic amenities – for example, a kitchen and/or bathroom.
An HMO can be either:
a house split into separate bedsits
a shared house or shared flat, where people have separate rental agreements
a bed-and-breakfast hotel that is not just for holidays
shared accommodation for students
If you are unsure as to whether your home is an HMO, ask your local council to check if your home is registered as an HMO.
Properties classed as HMOs come with additional landlord responsibilities
ensure contact details of the landlord are made available to the occupiers. Details must be clearly displayed in a common part of the HMO.
proper fire safety measures are in place
there should be smoke detectors in every bedroom and in communal areas and the kitchen must have a heat detector
annual gas safety checks are carried out
electrics are checked every 5 years
the property is not overcrowded
there are adequate cooking and washing facilities
communal areas and shared facilities are clean and in good repair
there are enough rubbish bins for everyone living in the house.
These rules are there to reduce the risk of fire, and to make sure that people living in shared houses or flats have access to decent facilities.
Your landlord must have registered and licensed your home as an HMO with the council if:
5 or more unrelated people live in it
there are 2 or more separate households living there.
Licenses usually last for 5 years but some councils grant them for shorter periods. When deciding whether to issue or renew a license, the council will check that the property meets an acceptable standard. It will look at whether:
the property is large enough for the occupants
it is well managed.
A landlord can be taken to court if the house or flat they’re renting out is classed as an HMO but they haven’t licensed it with the council.
Your landlord is responsible for any repairs to communal areas of the house.
They are also responsible for repairs to:
the structure and exterior of the house – including the walls, window frames and gutters
water and gas pipes
basins, sinks, baths and toilets
fixed heaters (radiators) and water heaters.
Individual tenants are usually responsible for minor repairs to their living areas and for fixing any items they own. You should check your rental agreement to find out who’s responsible for what.
As HMO specialists, Strats can take care of all of your HMO needs, so our landlords and tenants can relax in the knowledge that we've got everything covered.
For further information:
Statutory Regulations for Tenants - http://www.welhat.gov.uk/CHttpHandler.ashx?id=1813&p=0