The deadline for the new mandatory licensing rules for HMOs comes into effect on 1st October and despite a relatively low key promotion of the changes, the government stats landlords could face an unlimited fine for renting out an unlicensed HMO.
Under the old rules, an HMO fell under mandatory licensing if the property had three or more storeys, which were shared by five or more people in two or more households, where they shared rooms such as kitchens and bathrooms.
In the new HMO rules, mandatory licensing will be based solely on the basis that there are five or more people in the property, in two or more households, with shared facilities.
Also, you won’t be able to serve a Section 21 if a property has not been correctly licensed and the landlord or agent (or both) could face criminal prosecution and an unlimited fine.
Councils do have the option to issue a civil penalty of up to £30,000 and a rent repayment order limited to the last 12 months rental incomes, something that would be beneficial and lucrative to councils if irregularly or unlicensed properties were discovered.
The government’s guide: Licensing of houses in multiple occupation in England: a guide for landlords and managers, can be found here: here
Click here to apply for a House in Multiple Occupation Licence.
To find good tenants faster for your HMO, choose the original online letting agency and list your property today.