Are you unknowingly letting your property without the proper license
Do you let shared accommodation? Or do you share your home with people who are not members of your family – friends or lodgers? If so, it may be a house in multiple occupation (HMO), and you may need a licence.
Who needs an HMO licence?
A house is an HMO if it is the only or principal residence of three or more qualifying persons from three or more families. If you are not sure whether you need an HMO licence for your property, you should contact the local authority for advice. It is a criminal offence to operate an HMO without a licence. The need for a licence does not depend on rent being paid, or on any formal tenancy arrangements being in place. The application for a licence must be made by the owner, even if the property is leased to or managed by another person or organisation.
How do I apply?
You must contact your local authority for a licence application form and information about the procedure, the standards you will need to meet and the fees. Some parts of the procedure are set out in law, in the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982. Guidance for local authorities on how to operate the licensing system is also provided by the Scottish Executive, but each authority will have slightly different procedures. The licensing authority has to satisfy itself: that you, and any manager of the HMO, are a fit and proper person to hold a licence and that the property is suitable for use as an HMO, for the proposed number of people. What are the required standards? The licensing of HMOs seeks to control standards in three main areas: the suitability of a property owner to be an HMO landlord, his management of the premises, and the physical condition and facilities of the accommodation. These things must be checked before a licence is granted; the licence is then usually granted with conditions which require the standards to be maintained through the period of the licence.
For help in navigating your HMO, contact West today!