You need a Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) licence if you own a property that is occupied by 5 or more people forming 2 or more households, regardless of the number of floors in the property.
Licensing standards and conditions
The licensing fire and amenity standards your property needs to meet can be found under supporting information on this page.
The law relating to houses in multiple occupation can be found on the government's website.
Who needs to apply for a licence
You need apply if your property meets the requirements for a licence. You need to nominate a person or company to be the licence holder.
If you want to take over a licence currently held by another landlord or family member you will need to apply using the apply for a new licence form.
Who doesn't need a licence
You don't need an HMO licence if your property is a purpose built flat in a block of three or more self-contained flats.
How long a licence lasts
Licences usually last 5 years but, where applications are late, this will be 5 years from when the licence should have been issued, subject to a minimum period of 2 years.
Renew your licence
You need to make sure you renew your licence.
What training you need
Licence holders and managers need to attend an HMO licensing training course.
Working in partnership with the Residential Landlord Association (RLA), we have developed training to satisfy our licence conditions. The RLA offers a professional development course for landlords. You can also take this course to improve your knowledge in this area.
The training is delivered by a landlord and allows networking between landlords, managers and agents as part of the training. This course is commissioned by us and is the preferred training course to satisfy licence training conditions.
The costs for HMO licenses are:
- £750 for a new licence application fee for a 5 person HMO
- £25 fee for each additional person on a licence
- £360 where a licence is taken over by another landlord or family member
If you withdraw your licence application before the licence has been issued you will receive a 50% refund.
Where we identify properties where applications are over 2 months late there is a £150 charge.
You can use our calculator to work out how much your licence(s) will cost.
What happens once you have made an application
Your application will be assessed to confirm that you need a licence and to ensure that the correct type of application has been made. If we approve you will be granted a licence subject to licensing conditions.
We aim to issue the licence within 45 working days of a valid application, however, this time frame is liable to change.
Tacit consent will not apply
It is in the public interest that we process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from us within 2 months of making an application you should contact us.
How to apply
Pay your application fees
Before you apply you should pay your licence fees. Payments can be made online, by calling our team or by a cheque made payable to Sheffield City Council.
Apply by email or post
You can download and print the application form and send it to us by email or post. If there are more than 2 licence holders or managers you should submit an additional fit and proper declaration form with your application.
You should include your payment reference number with your application.
How to make an appeal or a complaint
If you want to appeal a decision or make a complaint about your HMO licence or application you can do so in writing at HMO@sheffield.gov.uk or by post to:
Private Housing Standards