Make sure you are up-to-date with new HMO legislation.
Rochford District Council are keen to alert landlords to the change in legislation pertaining to the licensing of HMO (House in Multiple Occupation), which comes into force from 1 October 2018.
From the 1st October 2018 mandatory licensing will no longer be limited to certain HMOs that are three or more storeys high, but will also include buildings with one or two storeys occupied by five or more people in two or more separate households.
The change in legislation has also introduced two new mandatory conditions minimum sleeping room sizes, and waste disposal provision requirements.
Licenses will be granted if the proposed licence holder is a ‘fit and proper’ person and is the most appropriate person to be given a licence as well as if the house is suitable for occupation by a certain number of people.
Rochford District Council’s Portfolio Holder for the Community, Cllr Mike Webb said: “Licensing of HMOs ensures that our housing team know about properties which may present significant health risk to residents. It also gives us the evidence that shows appropriate management arrangements have been made for the property.
“The changes to the regulations will drive up conditions for residents. Through the licensing process, officers will be able to advise property owners of the regulations and enforce them.”
The cost of a HMO licence is set by the council at a fee of £354.00 up to 5 bedrooms for each additional bedroom an additional £55.50 is chargeable .The licence is generally granted for a 5 year period.
Failing to apply for a licence for a licensable property and the breaching of licence conditions, and or management regulations is a criminal offence. The council has the ability to prosecute through the courts for non –compliance.
The council’s Housing Team is committed to working with property owners to ensure licensing requirements are followed. Landlords who are uncertain if their property requires licensing should contact the Private Sector Housing Service using this form or by visiting this page