When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Getting help with problems in shared housing

Get advice if you are worried about problems in shared housing. If your property is a HMO, the council’s HMO unit may be able to help you.

The council can take formal action against a landlord of a HMO if:

  • The property should be licensed and is not;
  • There are hazards in the property;
  • The property is overcrowded;
  • People living in or visiting the property are behaving anti-socially.

If your shared property is a HMO and you are worried about conditions in the property, you can ask the council’s HMO team to check for hazards.

When a landlord applies for a licence for a HMO, the property is approved for a maximum number of persons. If there are more people living in the property than the license allows, the landlord has committed an offence.


Dealing with anti-social behaviour in any type of property can be difficult. Shared properties that are HMOs have extra requirements relating to managing this type of behaviour. The HMO manager must have a policy or plan to deal with any anti-social behaviour caused by or affecting the people living in the HMO.

Your HMO manager must look after the property and your tenancy in accordance with a code of practice. The code of practice makes the HMO manager responsible for a number of different areas.

Sharing arrangements don't always work out. If you're having problems with your flatmates, don't ignore the issue. Try to resolve the situation.