What is an HMO?

Mandatory licensing

You need a licence if the property:

  • is occupied by five or more people; 
  • those people form two or more households; 
  • tenants share an amenity like a kitchen, bathroom or toilet.

Mandatory Licensing covers the whole of Bath and North East Somerset

Mandatory Licensed properties do not need an Additional Licence.

Additional licensing

Bath and North East Somerset Council introduced an Additional Licensing scheme on the 1st January 2014 and extended on the 1st of January 2019 city wide for another five years (expires on 31.12.2023).

What is Additional Licensing

You need a licence if the property is:

  • in the boundary of the City of Bath
  • and is occupied by three or four people; 
  • those people form two or more households; 
  • tenants share an amenity like a kitchen, bathroom or toilet.

Homes for Ukraine

This scheme is open to Ukrainian nationals who were residents in Ukraine prior to 1 January 2022 and to their immediate family members who may be of differing nationalities, to be sponsored to come to the UK.

As no rent is payable for accommodation under the scheme, no HMO licence is required, as these properties would be exempt as per the HMO definition in the Housing Act 2004, S.254 2(e).  Sponsors can also receive an optional ‘thank you’ payment of £350 per month for up to the first 12 months of sponsorship, which would not be treated as rent.

If you want to support Ukrainian refugees via charity or offer them a room, visit our website: https://beta.bathnes.gov.uk/support-ukraine

HMO Licensing exemptions

An HMO would be exempt from Mandatory licensing, if a flat occupied by 5 or more occupants is situated in a purpose-built block comprising three or more self-contained flats.

However this HMO, if located in the additional licensing area, would still require a licence under the Additional licensing scheme, unless it complies with the below exemption.  

A HMO occupied by students would be exempt from the Additional Licensing scheme, if the company managing it has signed up to one of the 3 approved codes of practice:

New Additional Licensing area map

Additional Licences are not required for buildings converted entirely into self-contained flats (s257 HMOs), although the individual flats maybe licensable in their own right; purpose built student accommodation where the organisation which manages the building is subject to a national approved code of practice and the building in question is subject to that code.

Apply for a licence


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