Dead­line for land­lords fac­ing un­lim­ited fines

The Daily Telegraph - Your Money - - FRONT PAGE -

Land­lords must com­ply with new gov­ern­ment rules on large prop­er­ties in two weeks or face un­lim­ited fines. The rules ap­ply to land­lords who let out “houses in mul­ti­ple oc­cu­pa­tion” (HMOs). These are homes in which at least two house­holds share fa­cil­i­ties, such as a kitchen or bath­room.

The new regime ex­pands the def­i­ni­tion of an HMO. Cur­rently, an HMO must be at least three sto­ries high and con­tain five or more people in at least two house­holds. From Oct 1 the height re­stric­tion will be dropped.

How­ever, pur­pose-built blocks of flats with three or more house­holds will be ex­empt from the new rules.

The Res­i­den­tial Land­lords As­so­ci­a­tion said the change would re­sult in 177,000 more land­lords need­ing an HMO li­cence. Affected land­lords must ap­ply to their lo­cal au­thor­ity for a li­cence by Oct 1 or face un­lim­ited fines and pos­si­ble crim­i­nal pros­e­cu­tion.

Coun­cils will also be able to deem any­thing an HMO if they wish. They can also charge for a li­cence and re­quire it be re­newed ev­ery few years. The rules are de­signed to stop

Many prop­erty in­vestors are un­pre­pared

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