Houses in multiple occupation licence

Houses in multiple occupation (HMO) are properties where different households are living and sharing facilities such as a kitchen and/or bathroom.

If an HMO contains five or more people a HMO licence is needed.

You can find out what a house in multiple occupation is and what properties need a licence on the West of England Housing website.

Mandatory house in multiple occupation licensing scheme

Since 1 October 2018, any Landlord who rents out a property that is occupied by five or more people in two or more households must have an HMO license. This includes homes of any height such as two storey houses, bungalows or self-contained flats.

apply for a house in multiple occupation licence on the Gov.UK website

Once we have received your application, we follow a formal consultation procedure to allow the applicant and other relevant parties to comment on the proposed conditions before the licence is formalised.

You can view the current licence fees on our fees and charges page.

Operating a HMO without a licence is a criminal offence, if you haven’t submitted an application you could face prosecution or a fine of up to £30,000. If you haven’t heard from us within 12 weeks of making your application, contact us. If your application fails, contact us in the first instance.

If you think the property is overcrowded or should have a licence please report the address so we can investigate. you can do this using our online rogue landlords form – go to our help for tenants page for more information.


Housing Act 2004

Last reviewed: Monday 9 July 2018