We use cookies to give you the best possible experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we'll assume that you're happy to receive all the cookies on our website. However, you can change your cookie settings at any time.

Your Privacy

When you visit any website, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. This information might be about you, your preferences or your device and is mostly used to make the site work as you expect it to. The information does not usually directly identify you, but it can give you a more personalised web experience.
Because we respect your right to privacy, you can choose not to allow some types of cookies. Click on the different category headings to find out more and change our default settings. However, blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience of the site and the services we are able to offer.

Strictly Necessary Cookies


These cookies are strictly necessary for the Website to work properly and for us to keep it secure. They are needed to allow users to use the Website and its features, including to move between pages of the website.

These cookies are required

Performance and analytical cookies

These cookies allow us to collect certain information about how a user navigates the Website. These cookies collect information that is used either in aggregate form to help us understand how our site is being used or how effective are marketing campaigns are, or to help us personalise our site for you. We use Google analytics and Bing 1st party cookies and DoubleClick 3rd party cookies for reporting purposes.

Marketing cookies

These cookies are used to make advertising messages more relevant to you. We may use this data to tailor the marketing and ads you see on our own and other websites and mobile apps, including social media.

Research and legals

New rules for HMO landlords from October 2018

Since 1st October 2018, new legislation is in effect in England and Wales that affects HMO (House of Multiple Occupancy) landlords.

To prevent overcrowding, minimum standards now apply to the size of bedrooms in HMOs.

  • Double bedrooms must be at least 10.22m2 in area.
  • Single bedrooms must be at least 6.51m2 in area.
  • For children under the age of 10, a single bedroom must be at least 4.64m2 in area.
  • Rooms smaller than 4.64m2 must not be used as sleeping accommodation.

You may therefore need to change the furniture provided if your property is furnished, and change the way you advertise the property.

Changes to the definition of an HMO

This new legislation also changed the definition of an HMO for licensing purposes, and means many more landlords will need HMO licences.

HMO licences are designed to ensure landlords are providing homes that meet acceptable standards. And they also mean the local authority can more closely monitor the number of HMOs in their area, to assess local housing and transport needs.

Previously, a licence was only mandatory if your HMO was occupied by five or more people, from two or more family units, and was spread over three or more storeys.

Now, you need a licence for any such household, no matter how many storeys it has. (HMO licensing rules are different in Scotland.)

Purpose-built flats, conversions, bungalows and large two-storey homes all meet the new definition, and it’s estimated that the number of properties requiring a licence has almost quadrupled. Student and graduate houseshares are now particularly likely to require an HMO licence.

If you’re affected, you need to apply to your local authority for a licence. Click here and input your property’s postcode to find contact details for the local authority in question.

Licences are not free, and your local council can tell you what one costs (they vary from council to council). Every HMO needs its own licence.

HMO licences need renewing every five years, and you could be subjected to an unlimited fine for renting out an unlicensed HMO. If you already have any HMO licences in place, they’ll remain valid until their existing renewal date.