Name: Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation
Description: Housing: Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation

Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation

The Housing Act 2004 came into effect on 6 April 2006. The Act requires Local Authorities to licence certain types of houses which are in multiple occupation. Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) include those occupied by persons who do not form a single household and are not totally self contained.

Currently a mandatory licensable HMO will include those of 3 or more storeys and with 5 or more persons in more than one household.

However, with effect from 1 October 2018, any HMO with 5 or more persons in more than one household, regardless of the number of storeys an HMO may be, MUST have an HMO Licence.

(There is one exception - a purpose-built flat being occupied by 5 persons as an HMO which is situated in a block comprising three or more self-contained flats will not require a license).

A licensed HMO must also comply with all the standards for non – licensable HMOs but in addition , qualifying HMO’s must have a Licence to operate and licence conditions can include; the condition of the property, management conditions, Amenities, room sizes, occupation restrictions, require works to be completed. The Licence holder and any agent must be deemed a ‘fit and proper person’.

Additional licence conditions are also being introduced on 1 October 2018, this is available from

New minimum bedroom sizes:

Occupation Room size
One person aged over 10 years Not less than 6.51 sqm
Two persons aged over 10 years Not less than 10.22 sqm
One person aged underr 10 years Not less than 4.64 sqm
No occupation permitted Less than 4.64 sqm

The room sizes will apply to new licence applications and renewals but the Council has the discretion to provide a maximum of an 18 month grace period to allow Landlords to take appropriate steps to comply with room size licensing conditions.

The licence holder must comply with the Council’s scheme for storage and disposal of household waste. Tenants are still responsible for disposing of their waste in the designated space.

It is an offence to operate without a licence or to fail to comply with conditions and breaches to these requirements could result in fines or prosecution.

The management of an HMO should comply with the requirements of Statutory Instrument 372 – The Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation PDF, 197.79 KB

For more detailed information, please download a copy of ' Guide to HMO Licensing PDF, 324.53 KB '

Policy Guide to Mandatory Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation in Dartford - Annex  2 of The Council’s Private Sector Housing Enforcement Policy is awaiting approval by cabinet the draft copy is available.

List of properties with a HMO
Last Updated: 07th March 2019 Print Link