If you own or manage an HMO which falls under the mandatory licensing scheme, you must complete and return an HMO licensing application form. The licence is valid for two or five years and costs £790. A licence cannot relate to more than one property and is not transferable.
It is usual for the Council to inspect the property prior to a licence being issued. The inspection will assess whether the licence conditions set by the Housing Act 2004 are met by the licence holder such as the provision of an annual gas safety certificate, that electrical appliances and furniture are in a safe condition, that smoke alarms are installed, and to provide occupiers of the house with a written statement of terms under which they may occupy it. It will also assess whether there is sufficient provision of bathrooms and kitchens and whether management arrangements are adequate.
We are also placed under a statutory duty to satisfy ourselves as soon as reasonably practicable after an application for a licence has been made, that the HMO is free from any serious hazards under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS).
We will grant you a licence if we are satisfied that:
- the proposed licence holder (which can be the landlord or managing agent) are ‘fit and proper’ people
- the property and the tenancy are managed appropriately
- the accommodation meets all minimum standards such as sufficient number of toilets, kitchens and bathrooms for the number of residents
Failure to Apply For A Licence
Landlords and/or agents failing to apply for a licence may face fines of up to £20,000, a criminal record and in certain situations can be made to repay the rent for the time the property is unlicensed.
For further information and advice please contact:
Housing Standards Team
Telephone: 01254 388 111