HMO avoidance

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    HMO avoidance

    According to the HMO rules & the new rules that come out in oct 2018, there seem to be some obvious ways to have 5 or more tenants but avoid being an HMO:

    pre oct 2018
    1. Five or more tenants, on only 1 or 2 levels

    post oct 2018 (under new rules, 2 levels now count toward large HMO)
    1. Five or more tenants on only 1 level
    2. Five or more hotel-style ensuite bedrooms with their own mini fridge & microwave (or similar), no shared facilities. This could on 1, 2, 3 or more levels. Many tenants in city areas don't cook & would be happy to rent without a formal kitchen. Likewise, many tenants who cook occasionally would be happy to use a portable hob or microwave in return for cheaper rent, as long as there are suitable fire safety devices.
    3. Four tenants in the house, 1 tenant in a garden room with ensuite bathroom & portable cooking facilities, with suitable fire safety requirements met.
    ​​​​​​​4. Rent out 5 bedrooms on air b n b. This could be on 1, 2, 3 or more levels. Even though there are 5 or more unrelated people, the fact that they're temporary would appear to exclude HMO licensing.

    Or, simpler, safer, register & license HMO and avoid possible fines, criminal charges, finding mortgage & insurance terms breached (so, e.g. place burns down, occupants 'orribly burned, no payout, you bankrupt..) & rent-repayment-orders (this latter meaning you have to repay all the rent...). This latter see
    The council has to date applied for 61 rent repayment orders resulting in £380,000 in reclaimed benefits.
    And no, AirB&B can turn out to be an AST - see
    - so if that is the case problems with penalties for non-protected deposits & s21's being invalid due to matters not being sorted & served on tenant/occupant (GSC, EPC, deposit)

    I'm very not keen on tenants, agents, landlords or MPs etc etc etc... who try to fiddle their way round laws & regulations: Not that you are necessarily planning to do so, clearly.
    I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...


      My post was more of a question- "is this true?", although it may not have seemed obvious.

      Some people legitimately don't want the hassle of owning a large HMO that requires a license. Helping people to understand HMO rules does not necessarily constitute "agents who try to fiddle their way round laws".

      Your suggestion to register & license an HMO would fail, since they don't fall under the licensable HMO conditions. The council would turn down your application.

      Your link is broken. It leads to this: Sorry, that page does not exist


        Originally posted by cupcake78292 View Post
        Your link is broken. It leads to this: Sorry, that page does not exist
        So sorry: Both still seem to work for me, albeit the EHN one takes some time. If any link is still broken for you, could you kindly indicate which of the two, and which browser/ operating system you are using, please?

        I am legally unqualified: If you need to rely on advice check it with a suitable authority - eg a solicitor specialising in landlord/tenant law...


          I think youre misinformed cupcake.
          1) I believe Oct 2018 regulations just remove the 3 storey restriction so even a Bungalow with 5 tenants becomes a licensable HMO
          2) This is likely to be 5 self contained bedsits each with their own Council Tax liability and the building itself may still be an HMO
          3) If there are only 4 tenants in the property because one has been housed elsewhere then clearly it would not be caught by mandatory licensing
          4) AirBnB wouldnt normally be their main home of course, unless the residents decide to make it their main home and a court decides that they actually have ASTs, in which case you now have an unlicenced HMO where you cant use a s21 to get them out and because youre unlicenced the tenants decide to claim all their rent back through a Rent Repayment Order.


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