The HMO regulations 2018 changes and how they affect you as a landlord on October 1st 2018 the HMO regulation changed for the first time since 2010…
There where 2 main changes to the regulations for HMO’s and 1 regarding section 21 notices (no fault eviction notice) that any landlord should be interested in.
Certainly points 2 and 3 regardless of whether they are an HMO landlord or not as it sets out standards that could be applied to other properties going forward.
The main part of the legislations to change is the 3 story rule – up until 30/9/18 a property was deemed to be an licensable HMO if it comprised 5 or more tenants from 2 or more households and was over 3 or more stories.
If your property was 2 story’s you didn’t need a license no matter how many tenants you had – depending on your local area and local councils regulations (more on this later)
Now the new regulations from October the 1st 2018 require you to have an HMO license if you have 5 or more tenants from 2 or more households, removing the 3 stories rule.
The government believes that 177,000 properties will fall under this new requirement and should of applied for a license by the 1st of October 2018.
In the draft regulations there was talk of a 6 month grace period but this seems to of been abolished.
The minimum room size regulations are changing as well, so from the 1st of October 2018 the minimum room size requirements for Houses of Multiple Occupation will be…
- Not less than 6.51 square metres for any room in the HMO used as sleeping accommodation by one person aged over 10 years.
- Not less than 10.22 square metres for any room in the HMO that is used as sleeping accommodation by 2 persons aged over 10 years.
- Not less than 4.64 square metres for any room in the HMO that is used as sleeping accommodation by any person aged under 10 years.
Any room that has a floor area of less than 4.64 metres square is not used as sleeping accommodation.
For the actual legislation if you find that sort of stuff interesting (I’m sure someone does)
2018 HMO regulation updates http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2018/616/made?view=plain
So in a nutshell, if you have a property with 5 or more people from 2 or more households you will be required to have an HMO license from the 1st of October 2018.
But what about existing HMO’s?
From my research it looks as if you will be required to conform to the new legislations and your local authority should be sending out letters to notify any landlord that now has rooms that falls into the minimum size regulations to give notice of the breach and to give the landlord a time period to bring the property up to standard.
This time period can be no longer than 18 months (but can be shorter).
I would suggest it’s good practice to begin the necessary steps to make sure you comply as soon as you can and not wait for a letter from your local authority.
Another thing worth mentioning on the floor size calculations is that…
any part of the room with less than 1.5m ceiling height can not be classed as part of the floor area.
Changes to section 21 notices there have also been changes made to section 21 notices, these are the notices a landlord serves to a tenant to give them notice to vacate a property, often called a “no-fault eviction notice” it is the most common way of getting a tenant out of a property.
This is direct from Arla’s website…
From the 1st of October you have to use the new type of section 21 notice – using the right notice is important if your tenants don’t leave and you have to go to court, any problem with the notices and you risk having to serve notice again.
You can see the original post here.
Another thing to keep in mind (as mentioned earlier) is article 4 areas, an article 4 area is an area where the local council has removed the prior approval for new HMO’s meaning that you have to apply for planning permission in these area’s.
There are several of these around the country so it’s worth checking your local council for updates on your area.