Residents invited to have their say on HMOs

The council is proposing updated licensing rules for landlords letting out houses in multiple occupation

Residents across Haringey are being invited to give their thoughts on new licensing rules for landlords in the borough who let out houses in multiple occupation (HMOs).

Haringey Council says its proposed additional HMO licensing scheme will “support measures to improve the private rented sector” by taking “a robust approach”.

Using current enforcement powers against landlords who have failed to licence under the current HMO licensing schemes, council officers have “proactively tackled properties in poor conditions as well as identify properties at risk through the scheme’s inspection programme”. The council this “important work” will continue should a new additional HMO licensing scheme be approved.

Because the existing additional HMO licensing scheme designation is coming to an end, the new proposed scheme will enable the council to fulfil its “commitment of ensuring residents across the borough have access to a safe and sustainable homes”.

If approved, HMO landlords will require an additional licence if they are rented to at least three people who are not from the same household but share facilities such as a bathroom and kitchen. In addition, properties converted into self-contained flats that do not meet building regulations would also be considered as an HMO and will need a licence.

Sarah Williams, cabinet member for housing services, private renters and planning, said: “All our residents deserve to live in a safe and well-maintained home.

“Nearly half of Haringey’s population privately rent their home, and we estimate that a quarter of these homes are in poor condition. We have many great landlords here in Haringey, but it’s important that the council uses all its regulatory powers to act against rogue landlords.

“The proposed additional HMO license will protect tenants by giving the council the tools to improve the conditions of those living in privately rented homes in the borough.

“I’d like to encourage all tenants, landlords, local businesses and members of the public to help us shape the future of local housing by giving your feedback on our new proposed additional HMO licence.” 

With around 40% of residents living in the private rented sector across the borough, HMOs are a “much needed and affordable option” for accommodation. At present, all HMOs in Haringey are subject to licensing, either under the extended mandatory licensing or under the borough-wide additional licensing scheme.

To date, fines amounting to over £250,000.00 have been issued to landlords who have failed to license their HMOs, the council says.

The consultation will end on 12th February 2024. For more information