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New Planning rules for Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO)

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If a Landlord lets a property that is classed as a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) they are required to have a licence.  The rules concerning what constitutes a HMO are quite complicated and if you are unsure whether they apply to you we recommend you contact us and check.

By now Landlords will be fairly familiar with the licensing requirements however since 6 April 2010 the Government has now introduced HMO’s into planning law.  As a result of the recent change, any Landlord who changes a family home into a HMO will be required to get planning permission.

The Government has been quick to let Landlords know that the new rules will not be applied retrospectively to existing HMO’s so if you have been letting a HMO since before 6 April 2010 you will not be required to apply for planning permission. 

However, before Landlords of existing HMO’s think they are off the hook they need consider that, if challenger by a Local Authority, the onus will be on them to prove that their property has been let as a HMO since before April 2010 and if they can’t do so they would need to obtain planning permission.  Because of this, we would strongly recommend that Landlords of HMO’s gather together as much evidence as possible (such as Tenancy Agreements and Deposit Protection Service Certificates) to prove that their property has been occupation as a HMO since before April 2010.
If you think that the rules concerning HMO’s may affect you, or if you have any other queries relating to rented property, then contact Veitch Penny LLP on 01392 278381 and we are happy to offer a free half hour consultation. 

Please note: This article does not constitute legal or other professional advice and should not be relied on as such. You should take specific advice regarding your circumstances before taking any action based on the information contained within this Update.

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