House in Multiple Occupation or HMO for short have been redefined under section 254 of the Housing Act 2004.
HMO Manager's duties
The Government enacted 'The Management of House in Multiple Occupation (England) Regulation 2006' in order to set standards for this management. These regulations place a number of duties upon the manager of a house in multiple occupation (HMO). These duties include:
1. Duty to provide information to occupiers
The name, address and telephone number of the manager must be provided to each household in the HMO, and the same information must be clearly displayed in a prominent position in the HMO.
2. Duty to take safety measures
Means of escape from fire must be kept free from obstruction and kept in good order and repair.
Fire fighting equipment and alarms must be kept in good working order.
Notices indicating the location of means of escape from fire must be displayed so they are clearly visible to all occupiers.
All reasonable steps should be taken to protect occupiers from injury with regard to the design of the HMO, its structural condition and the total number of occupiers. In particular, in relation to any unsafe roof or balcony, they must be made safe or all reasonable measures taken to prevent access to them; and in the case of windows with sills at or near floor level provide bars or other safeguards to protect occupiers.
3. Duty to maintain water supply and drainage
These must be maintained in proper working order - namely in good repair and clean condition. Specifically, storage tanks must be effectively covered to prevent contamination of water and pipes should be protected from frost damage.
4. Duty to supply and maintain gas and electricity
These should not be unreasonably interrupted.
All fixed electrical installations must be inspected and tested by a qualified engineer at least once every 5 years and a results certificate obtained.
The latest gas test certificate and electrical test certificate must be provided to the council within 7 days of the council making a written request for such.
5. Duty to maintain common parts, fixtures, fittings and appliances
All common parts must be kept clean, safe, in good decorative repair and working order and free from obstruction. In particular handrails and banisters must be provided and kept in good order, any stair coverings securely fixed, windows and other means of ventilation kept in good repair and adequate light fittings available at all times for every occupier to use.
Gardens, yards, outbuildings, boundary walls/fences, gates and so on which are part of the HMO should be safe, maintained in good repair, kept clean and present no danger to occupiers.
6. Duty to maintain living accommodation
The internal structure, fixtures and fittings, including windows and other means of ventilation, of each room should be kept in good repair and in clean working order. Each room and all supplied furniture should be in a clean condition at the beginning of the tenant’s occupation.
7. Duty to provide waste disposal facilities
No litter should be allowed to accumulate, except for that stored in bins provided in adequate numbers for the requirements of the occupiers. Arrangements need to be made for regular disposal of litter and refuse having regard to the Council’s collection service.
8. Duty to inform us about occupancy of the HMO
If required to do so, the manager shall provide details of individuals and households accommodated in the HMO.
For further information:
Contact: Housing Team,
Telephone: 01768 212455
Address: Eden District Council, Mansion House, Penrith, Cumbria CA11 7YG
Fax: 01768 890732