Houses in multiple occupation (HMO)

What is a house in multiple occupation (HMO)?

The Housing Act 2004 introduced a new definition of a house in multiple occupation.

For simplicity, a summary of the types of property that would be considered to be a HMO are:

  • An house (or flat) which is let to three or more people, who form two or more households, and who share a basic amenity (e.g. a bathroom, toilet or cooking facilities).
  • A building which has been converted entirely into bedsits, or other non-self contained accommodation, and is let to three or more people, who form two or more households, and who share a basic amenity (e.g. a bathroom, toilet or cooking facilities).
  • A converted house which contained one or more flats, that are not wholly self contained (i.e. the flat does not contain within it a kitchen, bathroom or toilet) and which is occupied by three or more tenants who form two or more households.
  • A building which is converted entirely into self-contained flats and the standard of the conversion does not meet the standards of the 1991 Building Regulations, and more than one third of the flats are let on short-term tenancies.

The building must also be the tenant’s only or main residence and rent must be payable.

Certain HMOs require a licence to operate, find out more about HMO Licencing

Do I need planning permission to convert my property into a HMO?

In Trafford an Article 4 Direction is in force so there are specific planning rules that may affect whether you need planning permission to operate a HMO. For example, you will need planning permission to change a family house into a HMO.

HMO queries

If you have any queries regarding HMOs, you can contact the Housing Standards Team: