What Are Landlords Extra Responsibilities With HMO Properties?

May 13, 2024 | Blog | 0 comments

Being a landlord can be hard work, but HMO property management in England can present some unique challenges of its own. HMO landlord responsibilities are greater than those involved in managing single-family dwellings and there are also HMO regulations and compliance rules to consider before you invest in this type of property.

Legal Obligations Of HMO Landlords

Managing HMO properties in England comes with some significant legal requirements.


Firstly, there are certain HMO licensing requirements that may apply. UK law demands that all houses of multiple occupation with five or more tenants from more than one household obtain a license to operate. In some areas, HMOs with three or more tenants are required to be licensed. Certain local authorities have their own licensing requirements which must be checked and complied with before renting out any rooms.

Minimum Room Sizes And Facilities

There are other legal requirements that must be adhered to regarding minimum bedroom sizes and the number of kitchen and bathroom facilities supplied per number of residents. All HMO landlords in England must ensure that their properties comply with these requirements to avoid falling foul of the law.

Safety Standards For HMOs

While all rental properties must comply with certain health and safety standards, HMOs must meet even higher standards to remain compliant with the law. Fire safety in HMO properties is especially important, with extra smoke and fire alarm requirements being just some of the crucial obligations that must be met.

HMO Maintenance Challenges

HMOs present more challenges in terms of maintenance than single-family properties. With more tenants and a higher turnover of residents, there will naturally be more wear and tear to the fixtures, fittings, and furnishings which will necessitate repairs and replacements on a more regular basis. Communal areas don’t belong to any specific tenant, so will require ongoing cleaning and maintenance, while individual rooms will need to be thoroughly cleaned in between tenancies.

Financial Considerations

HMOs come with more upfront costs than standard single-family rentals and require more money to be spent on them in the long-term when it comes to maintenance, marketing, and other elements of HMO property management in England. Landlords are also responsible for paying council tax on the property, although this can be charged within each tenant’s individual rental costs. There are also HMO insurance requirements to consider. Specialist insurance will be required to cover the potential problems that can arise with this type of rental property, since standard landlord insurance is not comprehensive enough to cover all eventualities.

Tenant Management In HMOs

HMO landlord duties to their tenants are more time-consuming when compared with those for single-family properties. Since HMOs traditionally have a higher turnover of tenants, there will naturally be more work involved in marketing rooms, arranging viewings, vetting prospective tenants, taking deposits, drawing up individual tenancy agreements, and managing check ins and outs with all the associated inventory checking and maintenance.

What Next?

Adhering to the latest best practices for HMO landlords can certainly be a challenge, but there are many benefits to be gained from this type of rental investment, not least a higher rental yield.

The good news is that HMO property management in England is much easier when you rely on an experienced and trusted company like The HMO Network.

We’re here to simplify the process of managing your house of multiple occupation so you can reap all the benefits of being a landlord.

Call us today on 01245 835859 or email us at beth@charlesdavidcasson.co.uk to find out how we can help you manage your HMO efficiently.