Getting a licence for a House in Multiple Occupation
The property you let will be considered to be a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) if three or more unrelated people live there as at least two separate households (e.g. three single people with their own rooms, or two couples each sharing a room). Your tenants would also need to share basic amenities such as a kitchen and/or bathroom.
You must have a licence if you’re renting out a large HMO. A licence is valid for a maximum of five years and you need a separate licence for each HMO you run. Your property is defined as a large HMO if it’s rented to five or more people who form more than one household, is at least three storeys high and your tenants share toilet, bathroom or kitchen facilities. Even if your property is smaller and rented to fewer people, you may still need a licence depending on the area.
In HMO tenancies commencing from 01 October 2015 (including renewals), the landlord or agent must now comply with section 6(5) of the Energy Performance of Buildings (England and Wales) Regulations 2012 by ensuring that a valid energy performance certificate is included free of charge in the prescribed information given to each tenant.
You should contact your local council to request an HMO licence in person, but if you use a managing agent they can apply for you. More details about how to apply for a licence in England can be found on the GOV.UK website.