Assisting HMO Landlords - New Regulations

New HMO regulations have been in effect since October 1, 2018 which has led to a growing number of enquiries from landlords who own properties that are now classed as HMOs. Many are seeking assistance on what changes need to be made and how they can become compliant without having to deal with a potential fine or prosecution.

Even though the changes were made almost 12 months ago, there is still some confusion surrounding the new legislation and we continue to help countless landlords to meet their legal obligations and licencing requirements.

The expert HMO team at Regal have successfully dealt with enquiries from clients who own properties in areas such as Dollis Hill NW2, Willesden NW10, Neasden NW10, Wembley HA9 and HA0 and Harlesden NW10 and are currently in discussions with a growing number of landlords in surrounding areas who require our assistance.

Brent council have implemented the changes to ensure that good quality housing is being made available to local residents in the area. This means that landlords must have an HMO licence whether or not they have three storeys in their property – which was one of the key minimum requirements before the law was changed.

Failure to secure a licence could lead to a fine of up to £30,000 per offence or a criminal record, as well as a ban from running a rental property. Having the right HMO licence will also ensure you are able to maximise the return on your investment – an area the Regal team have become particularly adept at advising on over the years.

Repair, maintenance and fire safety requirements

It has become increasingly difficult for many in London to afford their own property, which has led to an increase in demand for flexible and affordable rooms and self-contained units that are professionally managed and well maintained. When it comes to repairs and maintenance, the new regulations require landlords to:

  • Ensure all communal areas of an HMO property are kept in good repair
  • Carry out repairs to any issues related to the exterior and structure of the property
  • Maintain water and gas pipes in good condition
  • All electrical wiring must be safe and without issue
  • Baths, toilets, sinks and basins must be repaired if broken or faulty
  • Water heaters and fixed heaters (radiators) must be maintained

Safety regulations are equally as important in any HMO and these are mandatory regardless of the licence you possess. This includes:

  • An annual gas safety check to be carried out by a qualified professional
  • All electrical installations should be safe to use and checked at least once every 5 years
  • Ensure furniture and furnishings meet current fire resistance requirements
  • Landlords should keep a record of fire alarm tests
  • Fire doors must be kept in good condition and the surrounding area kept clear at all times

To find out how our HMO consultation and management service can help you, get in touch with us today on 020 8459 2530. Whether you are applying for an HMO licence for the first time, or you require further clarity on the rules, we’ll get you up-to-speed and compliant as quickly as you need.