Apply for a HMO licence

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Mandatory HMO licensing applies across England to all HMOs that are occupied by five or more persons forming more than one household.

Previously Mandatory HMO licensing only applied to HMOs of 3 or more storeys, but from 1st October 2018, the ‘storey rule’ is no longer applied.

It is an offence to operate a House in Multiple Occupation which meets the licensable criteria without a licence. Landlords can be prosecuted in the Magistrates Court and upon conviction can face an unlimited fine.

Further guidance for landlords and managers is available in IBC’s HMO Handbook

Licence fees

The full licence fee for a House in Multiple Occupation is £121 per unit of accommodation. A unit of accommodation is a room that you use or intend to use as sleeping accommodation. This includes bedrooms and living or dining rooms that, without alterations, are being used or you intend to use as bedrooms.

As an example, if your property has six bedrooms and a lounge and dining room that you are or intend to be used as bedrooms, your fee will be £968, i.e. £121 x 8 rooms.

From 1st October 2020 this Council will be changing the way applicants pay their licence fee, from a single full payment at the point of application to a two-part payment process. The new process is as follows:

  • The Part 1 fee will be £48 per unit of accommodation and must be paid when the application is made
  • Part 2 of the fee will be £73 per unit of accommodation and must be paid when the notice of intention to grant a licence is received and must be paid within 14 days of receiving the notice.

As a result of the above, an application is not duly made until both fees are paid. If the Part 2 payment is not received within the 14 days the licence will not be issued. The applicant will then need to start a new application which must again be accompanied by a Part 1 payment.

As an example, if your property has six bedrooms and a lounge and dining room that you are or intend to be used as bedrooms, your total fee will still be £968, i.e. £128 x 8 rooms but the fees will be automatically calculated as follows;

  • Part 1 fee = £384, i.e. £48 x 8 rooms
  • Part 2 fee = £584, i.e. £ 73 x 8 rooms

The Part 2 fee is not payable if IBC are proposing to refuse to grant the licence.

Variations

A variation is required in situations such as:

  • Where there is a change of address for the licence holder;
  • Where the manager (who is not the licence holder) changes;
  • Where there is a change in the maximum number of occupants at the HMO;
  • Where the number of rooms at the HMO changes.

Licence holders are responsible for informing the Council that a variation is required. Failure to notify the Council of relevant changes constitutes a breach of the licence conditions.

Apply online

You can apply for a HMO licence online here.

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For any queries please call Private Sector Housing on the details provided on this page. 

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Contact Details

Private Sector Housing,
Ipswich Borough Council,
4W Grafton House,
15-17 Russell Road,
Ipswich,
IP1 2DE

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01473 432000