Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs)

Apply for a licence

To make a licence application, please complete an application form. If you don't already have an account you'll need to register by clicking on the ‘Apply for a HMO Licence’ link below. This will enable you to begin your application and save an incomplete form and come back to it later.

Licence holders and managers (if identified) can be the landlord, manager or another person/body who has control of the property. They must:

  • be over 18 years old
  • pass the 'fit and proper person' test
  • not live abroad
  • not be in prison

If any of the above apply, then another person/body will need to be appointed as the licence holder and manager (if identified).

Your password:

  • must be at least 10 characters long
  • will be case sensitive
  • must contain at least
    • one lowercase letter
    • one uppercase letter
    • one number

When the online application is complete you will need to pay by credit or debit card.

While the procedures required to issue a licence are fairly lengthy, we have tried to make the application process as easy as possible to understand.  Please refer to the NBC HMO Application Guidance Notes for further assistance:

If you need confirmation whether your property will require a HMO licence please complete and return the 'Does my Property Require a HMO Licence?' check list so that we can clarify if you need to apply for a licence..


The Private Sector Housing fees and charges policy contains information on which licence fee is applicable to your application.

See a list of private sector housing fees and charges policy.


We have produced a guide to assist owners, agents and occupiers in relation to the standards a property should meet when operating as a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO).

Variation of a HMO licence  

If there has been a material change in circumstances at a property which currently holds a HMO licence a variation in licence may be required. It will be necessary to apply for a variation where the licence holder proposes to increase the permitted occupancy. Please see the policy download below for fees relating to a variation licence.

Licences are not transferable and if the owners of the property have changed then a new licence application is required.

Use this form to tell us about:

  • a change of address, or a new manager appointed
  • a property being altered or extended and permitted number of occupants increased; or
  • a variation due to policy or legislation changes

Please download and complete the form below and return it to

Variation of HMO Licence application form

Additional HMO licensing 

2020 to 2025 scheme

The scheme came into effect on the 1st of February 2020 and will last for a period of five years.  A designated area of the borough (identified on the map below) is subject to Additional HMO Licensing under section 56(1)(a) of the Housing Act 2004 for the following types of HMO:

  1. Any HMO (irrespective of the number of storeys) that contains three or four occupiers who form two or more households; and
  2. All self-contained flats (irrespective of the number of storeys) that are Houses in Multiple Occupation and contain three or four occupiers who form two or more households but, where the HMO is a section 257 House in Multiple Occupation, this Additional HMO licensing designation will only apply to those section 257 HMOs that are mainly or wholly tenanted, including those with resident landlords.


Landlords with licensable properties who fail to apply for a licence may face fines of up to £20,000, a criminal record and potentially rent repayment orders and a management order where the council takes control of the property.


Certain types of buildings are not defined as HMOs under the Housing Act 2004 and therefore do not need to be licensed. These include:

  • buildings, or parts of buildings, occupied by no more than two households each of which comprise a single person (i.e. two person flat shares)
  • buildings occupied by a resident landlord with up to 2 tenants
  • buildings managed or owned by a public body (such as the police or the NHS) or an LHA or a registered social landlord
  • where the residential accommodation is ancillary to the principal use of the building e.g. religious establishments, conference centres, etc.
  • student halls of residence, where the education establishment has signed up to an approved code of practice
  • buildings subject to other regulation such as as care homes, bail hostels, etc.
  • buildings entirely occupied by freeholders or long leaseholders.