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HMO - House of Multiple Occupation

A House of Multiple Occupation (HMO) is a property which is let to multiple occupiers who are not a family unit.  They need to be licensed, regulated and inspected for the safety of all the occupants.

Generally an HMO is a house split into bedsits, a house or flatshare where each tenant has their own tenancy agreement or students who are living in shared accommodation.


If your property has three or more storeys, is let to five or more unrelated tenants or the tenants share facilities, then you may need a license from your local council.


There are exceptions under the existing rules and you will not need a license if you own a flatshare with two unrelated people, if you are a landlord with two lodgers, if the building’s occupants are freeholders (or long leaseholders), or if the building is a bail hostel or care home.


Purpose built flats are not HMOs – but if the flat is shared by more than two tenants in more than two households then they are classed as HMOs.