The definition of a licensable House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) is changing from 1 October 2018. If you own a HMO you may need a licence from Cornwall Council and will have to make sure that you comply with various requirements.

 

Currently you need a HMO licence only if;

  • there are 5 or more people in residence – who aren’t all related to each other and form 2 or more households
  • at a property containing 3 or more storeys; and
  • which has shared facilities (such as bathrooms or kitchens).

 

However, under the new rules far more properties will require a licence to operate as HMOs because the requirement that a property have 3 storeys before it can be a HMO is being removed. Cornwall Council have a useful tool on their website to help you check if your property will need a licence.

 

If you are a landlord and you let out a licensable HMO without first obtaining that licence then you may be liable for a fine of up to £20,000.00. If you had a buy-to let-mortgage you would also be in breach of the conditions of your mortgage and risk the enforced repayment of the sum borrowed from the bank.

 

Clearly It will be important to submit an application for a licence as soon as possible. The rule change states that you should apply for a licence before 1 October 2018 so time is running out. Cornwall Council are also offering an “Early Bird”  discount on their fee if the application is made before 1 October.

 

It is important to note that there are additional regulations and restrictions affecting HMOs which are unique to the Falmouth area and these prescribe that any new HMO in Falmouth must have prior planning permission before it can be legally let out.

 

If you are considering buying or re-mortgaging a HMO it is important that you have a solicitor who understands the rules for this type of property. Nalders have solicitors specialising in conveyancing across all of our offices.   To find out more, please fill in our contact form, or phone your nearest office.

Truro | Farley House

Tel: 01872 241414, Fax: (01872) 242424

St Austell

Tel: 01726 879333, Fax: (01726) 67401
Falmouth
Tel: 01326 313441, Fax: (01326) 315971
Newquay
Tel: 01637 871414, Fax: (01637) 879414

Truro | Lemon Street

Tel: 01872 241414, Fax: (01872) 271019
Camborne
Tel: 01209 714278, Fax: (01209) 710437
Helston
Tel: 01326 574001, Fax: (01326) 564547
Penzance
Tel: 01736 364014, Fax: (01736) 364054

Nalders Solicitors is a trading name of Nalders LLP and is a Limited Liability Partnership registered in England and Wales (LLP No. OC354499). We use the term partner to refer to a member of Nalders LLP. A list of the members may be inspected at our registered office: Farley House, Falmouth Road, Truro, Cornwall. TR1 2HX. Nalders LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority No. 538003. Resolution Accredited Specialist. We will not accept service by electronic mail. VAT Registration No. 131 8555 74