Housing standards

These minimal legal standards apply to all Houses in multiple occupation (HMOs), whether or not they need to be licensed.

The standards stipulate the following:

  • An adequate means of space heating must be provided in each letting and in bathrooms, whether shared or not
  • Kitchens and bathrooms must be adequately ventilated, including extractor fans in kitchens
  • Kitchens, bathrooms and toilets must be of adequate size and layout and be suitably located in the HMO in relation to the lettings
  • All baths, showers, wash hand basins and sinks must be fitted with taps supplying cold water and a constant supply of hot water
  • For up to 4 occupiers, there must be at least one bathroom and toilet (which can be in the bathroom). This has been amended by Statutory Instrument 2007 No 1903 to say that there must be an adequate number of bathrooms, toilets and wash hand basins for personal washing for the number of persons sharing those facilities, and where reasonably practicable there must be a wash hand basin with appropriate splash back in each unit.
  • For five or more occupiers, there must be at least one bathroom for every 5 sharers, and a separate toilet for every 5 sharers. This has been amended by Statutory Instrument 2007 No 1903 to say that there must be an adequate number of bathrooms, toilets and wash hand basins for personal washing for the number of persons sharing those facilities, and where reasonably practicable there must be a wash hand basin with appropriate splash back in each unit.
  • Adequate size and layout kitchen for the number of sharers, containing sinks with draining boards, cooking equipment, worktops, storage cupboards, for food and crockery and utensils, fridge/freezers (combined or separate), and electrical sockets
  • Adequate refuse disposal facilities
  • Adequate fire precautions including fire doors and fire blankets as appropriate.

Last reviewed: 20 - 04 - 2016

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