The importance of landlords complying with HMO regulations is highlighted by this case where a local housing authority successfully prosecuted a landlord.
Local housing authorities (LHA) have a duty to license all houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) that are of three or more storeys and occupied by five or more persons who together do not form a single household.
The HMO regulations are complex. A LHA may also extend their licensing scheme by designating all or part of their district to selective or additional licensing. Any exemptions, therefore, need to be carefully considered as breaches by a landlord may result in prosecution and a substantial penalty.
“A tenant living in bedsit accommodation such as this property is almost 17 times more likely to be killed in a fire than an adult living in a similar single-occupancy house. “It is because of these shocking statistics that HMO licensing exists and officers carry out checks to ensure the safety of tenants"