House in multiple occupancy licence

Mandatory licensing for houses in multiple occupation has changed

The law relating to shared houses or houses in multiple occupation changed on 1 October 2018. Landlords of most Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO's) that house five or more people and not a single household need to have applied for an HMO licence. We are now accepting licence applications for any properties that meet the new requirement.

A landlord who fails to apply for a licence will be committing a criminal offence.

Find out more about the HMO licensing changes at: Mandatory licensing for houses in multiple occupation

A house in multiple occupancy (HMO) is where:

  • three or more people who do not form a single household live
  • there are shared facilities such as a bathroom or kitchen.

Only HMOs occupied by five or more persons need to be licensed.

You will need to apply to the licensing authority where the HMO is located. This is usually the local council, if you do not know who that is, see: GOV.UK, find your local council

Applying for an HMO licence

Read the accompanying notes and complete the form:

For information about guidance and standards and the public registers visit Houses in multiple occupation

Applying to vary an HMO licence

To apply to vary an HMO licence, please complete the HMO Licence Variation Form. Please note, we are legally unable to transfer an HMO licence to another person, a new application would be required. You should apply to vary an HMO licence if you wish to change the permitted occupancy of the property or change the property manager details on the HMO licence. There is no fee to apply for an HMO licence variation.

Apply to renew an HMO licence

To apply to renew an HMO licence please complete the HMO Licence Renewal Form

Temporary exemption notices

You can apply for a temporary exemption notice (TEN) if you manage or control a house in multiple occupation (HMO) that currently requires a licence but you want to take steps so the property no longer needs to be licensed.

Applications for a TEN must be made by the person who controls or manages the property – usually the owner or landlord – or their agent, using the form below. There is no application fee.

By applying you:

  • declare the information submitted is true and complete to the best of your knowledge
  • understand that it is an offence to send us information you know to be false or misleading in connection with our functions under Parts 1 to 4 or 7 of the Housing Act 2004

We may ask you to give evidence of statements made in your application. If we find something relevant that you should have disclosed, or which was incorrectly stated or described, action will be taken. This may include revoking your TEN.

We will only issue a TEN in exceptional circumstances. No more than 2 TENs will be issued for a property – each TEN will last three months. At the end of the exemption period, your property must either no longer need a HMO licence, or you must apply immediately for a HMO licence.

It is a criminal offence to operate a licensable HMO without having either a licence or a TEN.

If we decide not to issue a TEN, we will immediately give you notice of:

  • our decision, along with our reasons and the date it was made
  • your right to appeal against our decision

You may appeal within 28 days of the date our decision was made. Appeals must be made to the residential property tribunal for the east of England. For more information, please contact the HMO Courts and Tribunals Service:

First - tier Tribunal (Property Chamber) Residential Property
Cambridge County Court
197 East Road
DX: 97650 Cambridge 3
Tel: 01223 841524
Fax: 01264 785129