Houses in Multiple Occupation

The Housing Act 2004 has introduced a new definition of a 'house in multiple occupation (HMO)'. The interpretation is complex but can briefly be summed up as a building or part of a building consisting of one or more units of living accommodation, or a self-contained flat; occupied by persons who do not form a single household and where there is some sharing of the basic amenities (washing facilities, toilets, kitchens).

The Government intended that only high risk HMO's be subject to licensing. They are identified as those properties which comprise three storeys or more, and house five or more persons who form two or more households. A household can be a single person. Regulations to control the management of HMO's have also been introduced and they apply to all categories of HMO.

HMO's which require a licence must meet certain standards which are set out in the Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation: A Guide for Landlords and Managers.

Licence Conditions

All licences granted are subject to conditions which the licence holder must comply with either immediately or within a specified period of time. Certain conditions as detailed in Schedule 4 of the Act are mandatory and must be included in every licence granted.

We can also impose any other specific property conditions considered necessary for regulating the management, use and occupation of the premises concerned plus its condition and contents.

Standards and Licence Conditions (pdf 551.3kb)

A guide to the Licensing of HMO's (pdf 1.3mb)

Landlords with properties in Jesmond may be interested in the Jesmond Garden Project which has been set up to help keep the front and back gardens in Jesmond tidy.

All licensed HMO's can be viewed on our Public Register. View Online HMO Licenses and Applications


There is a fee payable by the landlord to cover the cost of administering the scheme and inspecting the properties to ensure that they meet the relevant standards. 

Making a Licence Application

Applications to renew an existing HMO licence must be made on-line. The application fee must be paid with the application. Discounts are available and these will be automatically deducted, if they are applicable. You can pay using either a credit or debit card. Payment by cheque or BACS cannot be accepted.

Please click here to apply and pay for a new HMO licence

Please click here to apply and pay to renew an existing HMO licence

Please click here to make a variation to an existing HMO licence

How long does a licence last for?

Section 68 (4) of the Act provides that a licence may be granted for a maximum of five years. Licences will be granted for this period where landlords have been found to be compliant with previous licence condition, maintained good property standards and demonstrated good management standards.

If we have evidence to suggest that management arrangements or property conditions are not entirely satisfactory, or where the council has taken intervention against the landlord but is not so serious as to warrant refusal to grant a licence or where concerns are raised by the Police or other statutory enforcement agency, licences may be granted for a lesser period.

Can I appeal the Council's decision?

You may appeal if the council decides to:

  • refuse a licence
  • grant a licence with conditions
  • revoke a licence
  • vary a licence
  • refuse to vary a licence

Appeals should be made to the Residential Property Tribunal, normally within 28 days. The Tribunal will also hear appeals regarding any enforcement notices that the Council may serve.

Property Chamber, Northern Residential Property First Tier Tribunal, 1st floor, Piccadilly Exchange, 2 Piccadilly Plaza, Manchester, M1 4AH

Will Tacit Consent Apply?

No. It is in the public interest that the authority must process your application before it can be granted.  If you have not heard from the local authority within a reasonable period, please contact it using the contact details below.

If you are a landlord or tenant and would like more information about HMO licensing please contact the HMO team by emailing: or by phone on 0191 211 6102.

Contact Details

HMO Team
Civic Centre
Newcastle upon Tyne


Phone: 0191 2787878

Other Relevant Pages

The Safety of Goods in Rented Accommodation

Page last updated: 
2 February 2018
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