help accidental landlord hmo question

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    help accidental landlord hmo question

    just found the hmo section so will add this question here

    Hi - I have been trying to get a sensible answer from the city council and keep going round in circles, so I thought I should ask some strangers on the internet who would at least bother to have a go at giving me some advice!

    So I have a rental house in a midlands city 3 bed, two tenants have recently moved out - leaving one tenant, I need to rent out the other two rooms to pay the mortgage.
    It is in an article 4 area, I do not need a HMO licence as there is only 3 tenants (needs licensing with 5) but still may be in breach of planning, as it's technically being let as a HMO and has been for years now.

    So what do I do? my options are either ask tenant to leave (good reliable tenant) and get an agency to let to a family - Or find two more to live in house and risk getting in trouble one day for running a HMO - the council have not said either way if I would be in breach of any rules.

    #2
    You don't become a accidental landlord (let alone an accidental HMO one) by accident. You deliberately did it.

    I'd ask the tenant to leave and sell the place.

    Comment


      #3
      Ok perhaps not, accidental landlord in this case means I moved away - rented my house out and never returned.
      Definitely accidental hmo landlord !

      Comment


        #4
        Article 4 is a massive topic and usually used to prevent certain types of development.
        Why don't you apply for a Certificate of Lawfulness on your HMO via planning dept of your council?

        How long has the letting to 3 separate persons been going on? Worst case scenario is that it is refused but at least you tried. Look up the many arguments for 3 unrelated persons sharing a house and use them in your application. Try a discussion with the planners first - usually they are quite helpful and you may be asked to pay for pre-application advice.



        Freedom at the point of zero............

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          #5
          the article 4 in this case is to prevent hmo's !

          probably 5 years or more, I am not sure if it was before the article 4 came into play in the area but I would find it impossible to prove - Its very likely they would refuse a certificate of lawfulness as it says they are not issuing licences for hmo, I thought I was ok as the 3 tenants were on the same tenancy but this isn't the case I discovered !

          Comment


            #6
            It's not just about planning (or licence). It's an HMO as per Housing Act therefore regulations apply.
            There is a fine line between irony and stupidity. If I say something absurd please assume that I am being facetious.

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              #7
              No. You did not sign a tenancy agreement with three separate people by accident. Do you want to be running an HMO in 2020?

              Comment


                #8
                No - I do not want to run a HMO, didn't want to in 2015 either ! - had to move away, knew 3 people who wanted to live together, rented house to them, signed an agreement, secured deposit with DPS, thought I was being legit. fast forward to 2020... need advice... Dont want to sell house at the moment.

                Comment


                  #9
                  If you choose to evict the remaining tenant you need to give 6 months notice at this time. It may be that the tenant agrees to leave sooner but they don't have to. You will also need to make sure the tenant has a copy of the EPC and gas safety certificate (if applicable) before serving notice. It seems that renting to a family is your best option but it could take a while before that will be possible. I suggest you speak to the current tenant.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    All of the basic regulations for an HMO apply when three people live in more than one household.
                    They are quite demanding on a landlord.
                    When I post, I am expressing an opinion - feel free to disagree, I have been wrong before.
                    Please don't act on my suggestions without checking with a grown-up (ideally some kind of expert).

                    Comment


                      #11
                      If your property has been rented as an HMO (sharers) in the past, then it does not need permission to run as an HMO PROVIDED it was before the council introduced Article 4 directives. Would you have evidence of it being an HMO, by the way of council tax bill, tenancies or electoral register etc...

                      If you rented as an HMO, after the introduction, then you should have applied for planning permission, in which case you would need at the mercy of the local planning guidelines.

                      Regardless, if the property needs an HMO license or not, you will still need to follow all the rules and regulation in relation to an HMO e.g. fire doors, smoke alarms etc...

                      Did you rent the property out on a single tenancy (joint for all three) or did you offer 3 individual tenancies?. Not an official term, but some councils use the term singe let-HMO or multi-let HMO. I wish there was a distinction.

                      If you have problems with HMO regulation, then you can rent out only one room. As two individuals are not an HMO.




                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by KING DADDY View Post
                        probably 5 years or more, I am not sure if it was before the article 4 came into play in the area but I would find it impossible to prove
                        That's very defeatest. You can easily find out exactly when the Article 4 directive came into force from the Council website and use your first tenancy agreement to show that it was let before this if ever challenged, (which I've never heard of by the way). Having said that, I doubt you're doing all the other things required by the HMO Management Regulations or that you're paying the Council Tax, which is your legal responsibility if letting rooms individually or whether you've checked that your Council doesn't have an Additional Licensing scheme, which could mean that even a 3 person HMO needs a licence. If I'm wrong then I apologise, but otherwise just evict the current tenant and either sell or let it to a family.

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