The government is extending the mandatory licensing scheme for Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) to cover all properties occupied by five or more people making up two or more households.
Any landlord or agent whose HMO is required to be licensed under the new rules, must apply to the council by 1 October 2018 or they’ll be committing an offence from that date.
The licencing process is simple and ensures that landlords are providing decent quality, safe accommodation for tenants.
Word from the Cabinet
Cllr Paul Gadsby, Lambeth Cabinet Member for Housing, said: “We have a huge number of residents living in private rented accommodation in the borough and it is essential that we as a council protect them from rogue landlords providing dodgy accommodation to make a quick buck. The HMO licensing scheme is part of this process and landlords should ensure they are properly licenced.”
Lambeth Council officers regularly inspect properties across the borough and where landlords are found not to hold an HMO licence where necessary, the Council will take enforcement action, including the institution of prosecution proceedings or the imposition of a Civil Penalty Notice. A recent prosecution undertaken by the Council resulted in a rogue landlord being handed a £10,000 fine.
When does mandatory licensing apply?
Five or more persons not living together as a single household, with some of the households sharing facilities:
- converted buildings with non-self-contained accommodation, such as bedsits, including residential premises above shops
- shared houses
- shared flats in converted buildings, including those above shops
- shared purpose built flats where the block comprises no more than two flats
As part of the new measures, the Government has also introduced National Minimum Room Sizes for rooms used for sleeping and mandatory HMO licence conditions relating to refuse storage and disposal. You can find out more information about this and other changes introduced on our dedicated HMO webpage.
To apply for a licence, landlords should visit lambeth.gov.uk/hmolicensing