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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

Houses in multiple occupation

Sharing arrangements don't always work out. If you're having problems with the people you're sharing with, don't ignore the issue. Try to resolve the situation. If you've signed a tenancy agreement, it will be difficult to leave the property before it has lapsed.

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.

 

The council will only grant a HMO licence if it is satisfied that the management arrangements for the property are satisfactory. As well as meeting the fit and proper person test, owners and managing agents are subject to a Code of Practice. Breaching this code could lead to losing your licence.

Locuințe cu Ocupație Multiplă – (HMO) sunt locuințe partajate între chiriași care nu sunt membrii aceleiași familii. Există reguli speciale pentru locuința dvs. dacă locuiți într-o casă cu mai mulți ocupanți (HMO).

 

The council has a number of enforcement tools available to deal with problems in HMOs. As well as a system of fixed penalty notices, the council can serve certain statutory notices on a HMO owner or manager. 

The entire deposit for a shared property is normally protected as a lump sum. One tenant will act as the lead tenant. The lead tenant is the only tenant that the deposit company will deal with. 

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.

Tenancy agreements are a legal contract. Make sure you read the agreement before you sign it. Here are some issues your tenancy agreement should deal with.

Your tenants can ask the council to inspect the HMO if they are concerned about conditions. If the council finds a hazard, you may be served with a hazard notice. You can be issued with a fixed penalty notice for £5,000 if you let the HMO be used when it is subject to a hazard notice.

Renting a room in a shared house used to be something associated with students or young people. But, this type of renting arrangement is becoming much more common, and many people live in shared housing well past their student years.

A house in multiple occupation, or HMO, is a particular type of rented housing, but not all shared housing will be a HMO. It's important to know if the home you are renting should be classed as a HMO. If it is, it must be licensed and meet extra safety standards.

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