- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 01 Oct 2018
House in multiple occupation
According to Gov.uk, a house in multiple occupation (HMO) is:
|… a property rented out by at least three people who are not from one ‘household’ (e.g. a family) but share facilities like the bathroom and kitchen. It’s sometimes called a ‘house share’.|
An HMO is defined as ‘large’ if:
- It is rented to five or more people who form more than one household.
- It is at least three storeys high.
- Tenants share toilet, bathroom or kitchen facilities.
- Ensure the house is suitable for the number of occupants (size and facilities).
- Ensure the manager of the house is considered to be ‘fit and proper’ (i.e. there is no criminal record, or breach of landlord laws or code of practice).
- Send the council an updated gas safety certificate every year.
- Install and maintain smoke alarms.
- Provide safety certificates for all electrical appliances when requested.
HMOs (described as ‘houses in multiple paying occupation’) fall within the sui generis planning use class. ‘Sui generis’ buildings are those that do not fall within any particular use class. The Latin term 'sui generis' means ‘of its own kind’.
See Sui generis for more information.
In October 2018, following legislation introduced by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) in September 2018, new rules came into force affecting landlords of HMOs.
Previously, only 'large HMOs' (i.e. those of more than three storeys and with five or more people forming at least two households) had to be licensed by the local housing authority. This threshold was removed by the new rules, extending the mandatory licensing of HMOs to smaller properties.
This is expected to increase the number of HMOs needing to be licensed from around 64,000 to 160,000. The government said the new rules would raise housing standards for tenants, in addition to new rules setting minimum size requirements for HMO bedrooms to tackle rogue landlords and overcrowding. However, the National Landlords Association (NLA) warned that tenants could face eviction or rent increases as a result of certification costs to landlords.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
- Core and cluster accommodation.
- Housing Act 1996.
- Housing Act 2004.
- Licensing buildings.
- Minimum room size.
- Permitted development.
- Planning permission.
- Sui generis.
- Types of building.
- Use class.
 External references
Featured articles and news
UK energy policy uncertainty as Welsh project put on hold
What collaborative working achieves and how it can be put in place.
BSRIA publishes the 2019 edition of its small but concise annual databook.
Using QSAND to measure the performance of disaster response.
What U-values are, why they matter and how they are calculated.
The need to ensure that we plan for all aspects of our bio-economy
BSRIA calls on government to reach deeper into the causes of pollution.
George Demetri brings a whole new level of technical knowledge to Designing Buildings Wiki.
Quality professionals need to take an active role in driving the completion process forwards.
The innovations needed to move from rhetoric to realisation.
Creating a sense of place, with radically-low running costs and the highest comfort levels.
A conversation between David Mitchell and Caitlin DeSilvey.