HMO licensing changes to further protect tenants across Bournemouth and Poole

Landlords across the area are urged to find out whether changes to Houses in Multiple Occupancy (HMOs) mandatory licensing rules mean that they must apply for a licence.

Private landlords who have a residential property with five or more people with two or more unrelated persons sharing washing or cooking facilities will be classed as an HMO under new rules introduced by Government and come in to force on 1 October 2018.

Currently, a licensable HMO is defined as a property with five or more unrelated people with three or more storeys. The change in legislation removes the number of stories so will apply to any property occupied by five or more people with two unrelated persons sharing facilities. It is estimated that there are approximately 2,400 homes across Poole and Bournemouth that will require an HMO licence under the new definition. There are some exemptions that will apply to self-contained flats within the legislation.

Councillor Robert Lawton, Cabinet Member for Housing, Bournemouth Borough Council, said: “It’s really important that all landlords across Bournemouth and Poole check to see if their properties are affected by the change to the HMO mandatory licensing. We have contacted directly all landlords known to us across the area but there will be others who may not be aware of the change in legislation and I would urge them to find out whether it affects them.”

Councillor Karen Rampton, Cabinet Member for Housing, Borough of Poole, said: “We support the government’s decision to extend HMO mandatory powers which have been put in place to further ensure that private rented tenants are protected from poor living conditions.”

Landlords will be required to apply from 1October to comply with the legislation. Applications can be made online at: or by calling: 01202 451083  or email:

Landlords from across the area can also find out more by attending the Landlords’ Conference, on Wed, 31 October 2018 at the Village Hotel, Littledown. For more information:

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