The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) is inviting landlords to have their say on the latest consultation for 'Houses in Multiple Occupation and residential property reforms', you have from now until the 13 December 2016 to complete the consultation document online or by emailing your responses to the questions.
So what are HMO proposals?
- Remove the story rule so all houses (regardless of how many floors) with 5 or more people from 2 or more households are in scope - this will further enable local authorities to tackle poor standards, migration and the problems seen in the higher risk smaller properties as the sector has grown;
- Extend mandatory licensing to flats above and below business premises (regardless of the number of storeys) - as the evidence shows more problems in these properties and;
- Set a minimum room size of 6.52sq-m in line with the existing overcrowding standard (Housing Act 1985) to close a loophole recently created by an upper-tier tribunal ruling which is enabling some landlords to let rooms far too small fo an adult to legally occupy.
The Government is also seeking your views on a number of measures not included in the technical discussion paper, including;
- That is should be a mandatory HMO licence condition (one that a local housing authority must impose) that the license holder provides adequate receptacles for the storage and disposal of normal household waste from the property
- Landlords may be subject to the new (introduced by the 2016 Housing and Planning Act) enhanced fit and proper person test
- The type of HMOs that the Government is considering that may be entitled to a mandatory discount are purpose built blocks comprising entirely of self-contained flats which only provide accommodation for students in further or higher education at specified establishments
Is my property subject to mandatory licensing? More information is available on p25 of the consultation paper. Read the full DCLG consultation paper here >