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 is changing. By 1 October 2018, landlords of most Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO's) that house five or more people and not a single household will 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 by that date will be committing a criminal offence.


Find out more about the HMO licensing changes

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 HMO's of three or more storey's 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

In West Suffolk, there are two licensing authorities, Forest Heath District Council and St Edmundsbury Borough 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