Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) make a valuable contribution to local housing as they offer a cheap and accessible form of housing for many people on low or moderate incomes. There are however strict standards regarding the health and safety of the tenants that landlords must follow, which are enforced by the individual local authority private sector housing teams. In some cases, fines can be placed on landlords that do not comply.
To help landlords comply with the requirements, Epsom & Ewell Borough Council has produced a guide. It is strongly recommended however that those wishing to establish an HMO speak first with the Environmental Health Team who will be able to offer advice.
Houses in Multiple Occupation - Amenity Standards (pdf - 288kb)
Licensing of houses in multiple occupation (HMO)
If you rent out a property for multiple occupancy, you may require a licence from your Local Authority.
An HMO must have a licence if all three of the following apply:
- It meets the definition of an HMO
- It is three storeys or more (includes basements)
- It is occupied by five or more people forming at least two households.
If the whole property is in self-contained flats, licensing would not apply.
- Applications must be made to the local housing authority
- You must be a fit and proper person to hold the licence.
A summary of the regulations relating to this licence
Application Evaluation Process
Licences will be granted if:
- the house is, or can be made, suitable for multiple occupation
- the applicant is a fit and proper person and the most appropriate person to hold the licence
- the proposed manager has control of the house, and is a fit and proper person to be the manager
- the management arrangements are satisfactory.
Fees will be payable for applications and conditions may be attached. The fee is based upon an application and operating fee. Should the application not be granted, you will be refunded half the fee. If you require any assistance throughout the application process, please contact us using the details below.
It is an offence to operate a licensable house in multiple occupation without a licence. The fine can be up to £20,000.
Apply for a house in multiple occupancy licence or tell us about a change
Fees for HMO Licences
Fees and Charges page
If you are concerned about conditions in your property you should speak with your landlord in the first instance. If you feel you need the Council to intervene you should report the matter by telephone or via the web. If you are looking at renting a room in a house that is three or more storeys, is occupied by 5 or more people forming 2 or more seperate households, ask for confirmation that the property is correctly licensed by the Council.
Information on landlords operating some local residential properties.
Telephone: 01372 732000