A Guide To Diversifying Your HMO Tenant Base in England.

Jan 12, 2023 | Blog | 0 comments

If you’re a HMO landlord in England with several properties, it makes sense to diversify your HMO tenant base so you can enjoy plenty of rental demand throughout the year.

When it comes to shared properties, there are three primary kinds of tenant:

  • Students
  • Those on a low-income
  • Working professionals

Each of these come with their own advantages and disadvantages, but here at The HMO Network, we find that it usually works best if you choose just one type of tenant for your property instead of renting out rooms to a mix of occupants. This minimises disputes and maximises the chances of a positive living environment in your HMO.

An Overview of Tenant Types

Let’s look at the three primary types of HMO  tenant.


Students are a popular market for HMO landlords in England to target, but it’s important to remember that outside of academic term times you’ll have reduced demand. Also, renting to students comes with some potential risks – a greater chance of property damage, and possible problems with neighbours due to noise.

Low-Income Tenants

This type of tenant will be receiving government benefits to cover their housing costs. There are some advantages to targeting this market since demand is high due to a lack of available social housing, and in general, this tenant type tends to prefer a longer lease. Nevertheless, there are some potential downsides, especially if the amount paid to the tenant by the government to cover their housing costs isn’t enough to pay for their entire monthly rent. If there is a shortfall, the tenant may struggle to make up the difference.

Working Professionals

This type of tenant is in full-time work and for this reason is often the tenant type of choice for HMO landlords in England as they have a reputation for being reliable. However, it’s important to know what this kind of occupant is looking for in an HMO to attract the best tenants for your property. Depending on whether you’re keen to attract younger or older professionals your property may need different amenities and features.

What Are Young Professionals Seeking?

Aged between 20 and 30, young professionals are just starting out in their careers and are typically seeking flexibility in their living arrangements. They want to meet people and live near local amenities like restaurants and bars, but parking isn’t usually an issue for them since they typically use public transport. Storage, modern amenities and an ensuite are a top priority for young professionals, and they tend to prefer short tenancies since they’re typically saving up for their own property. No-deposit or small deposit options are especially attractive to these tenants.

What Do Older Professionals Want in an HMO Property?

Tenants aged 30 or over are less interested in the social elements of shared living, but still want easy access to local amenities and comfortable, quality accommodation. Parking is a higher priority for this group, and access to outdoor spaces is also popular. This type of tenant is typically looking for a longer lease, especially if the property is affordable and offers the convenience of an all-inclusive rent that encompasses council tax, high-speed internet, and utility bills.

How Can I Make my HMO Property Appealing to Professional Tenants?

Whether you’re aiming to attract younger or older tenants to your HMO in England it’s important to make both communal spaces and individual rooms bright and attractive, preferably with open living spaces to encourage a strong sense of community.

Whenever possible, try to make parking available, and organise permits for your tenants if required. Since many working professionals rely heavily on public transport, make sure to outline local travel options in your HMO listing with distances to the closest bus stops and train stations and consider, if possible, adding ensuites to your rooms, since these are very popular with all ages of professional tenant.

The team here at The HMO Network are on hand to make it more convenient to manage your HMO property in England. Call us today on 01245 835859 or drop us an email at neil@charlesdavidcasson.co.uk to find out how we can help make your life easier as a HMO landlord.