Is My Rental Property an Unwitting or Accidental HMO?

Is my Rental Property an Unwitting or Accidental HMO?

Far more properties are HMOs (legally) than owners realise.   

So, here’s the simplified rule:

“If your property has three or more sharers – and one or more is not related, IT IS LEGLLY AN HMO.”

And because it is legally an HMO you face massive fines if you don’t comply with the fire, health and other requirements of the Managements of Houses in Multiple Occupation Regulations (England) 2006 as interpreted by the Housing Health and Safety Rating System.

“But I didn’t know it was an HMO.”

Guess what?  Just like every other area of British Law, IGNORANCE IS NO DEFENCE.

So…. If your property contains three or more people and just one of them is not related and you haven’t fitted the appropriate:

  • Fire Detection and Alarm System
  • Fire Doors
  • Notices
  • Protected Fire Escape Route
  • Trip and fall hazard prevention measure
  • Emergency lighting (in some cases)
  • Keyless exit locks on rooms and external doors
  • Safety glass in certain windows and doors
  • And completed a Fire Risk Assessment

…then you are at risk of either Criminal prosecution or Civil Penalty fines from the local Council that are usually around £5,000 for each item that you haven’t complied with.

The most important thing to do is to make your property compliant as a matter of extreme urgency. 

Preferably before the Council discovers your non-compliances.

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