Use this page to apply for a new licence for a house in multiple occupation (HMO).
You need planning permission if you want to turn a single-family home into an HMO in the city of Bath, and this also applies to some properties in the surrounding area. Contact our pre-application advice and development team for help with a planning application.
Before you apply
Depending on the location of your property and the number of occupants, you will either need to apply for a Mandatory Licence or an Additional HMO licence.
All HMOs in Bath and North East Somerset that are occupied by 5 or more tenants who share facilities will require a Mandatory Licence.
Mandatory Licensed properties do not need an Additional Licence.
HMOs in the city of Bath that are occupied by 3 or 4 tenants who share facilities will require an Additional Licence.
The current Additional licensing scheme expires on 31 December 2023.
Before we can approve a new scheme, we will need to carry out a consultation on any proposed new Additional HMO Licensing Scheme. We will update this page as soon as we know if this will or will not happen.
Details you need to submit
You will need to submit the following details as part of your application:
- Floor plans for the property
- Basic DBS certificates for all proposed licence holders, dated within 3 years
- A fit and proper person declaration for all proposed licence holders - company form and individual form
- If using a separate manager, a DBS certificate and fit and proper person declaration for the manager, dated within 3 years
- A current gas safety certificate
- A satisfactory Electrical Installation Condition Report, dated within 5 years
- An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)
You will also need to include information on all property owners, including any mortgages including roll numbers, any freeholders, any leaseholders and any charges on the property.
Read more about the floor plans you need to submit
You need to submit a floor plan with all new applications, where the layout has changed on renewal, or if you request a variation to the licence.
You must include the following details on your floor plan:
- Address of the property
- Floor level i.e ground, first, second
- All rooms and their use i.e kitchen, bedroom
- Location of stairs and doors
- All fire precautions currently with the property i.e fire blanket, fire doors, heat and smoke detectors
- Size of rooms (m2), not including hallways, WCs and bathrooms
- Number of occupants per bedroom
We will accept hand-drawn plans, as long as the information you provide is clear. Please do not upload any architectural plans, we may reject these.
A new HMO licence costs £795.
You will be asked to pay the licence fee when you submit your application online. You can either pay the balance in full or in two parts.
If you choose to pay in two parts, the initial amount payable is £500 at the time of application, and you must pay the remaining balance prior to the issue of your licence.
Payment can be made using most credit and debit cards. Unfortunately, we are not able to accept American Express.
An HMO licence usually lasts for 5 years, though we may reduce the duration of the licence if we feel a shorter duration is appropriate.
If you sell the property, you cannot transfer the licence to the new owner. They must make a new application. We will revoke your licence when you inform us about a property sale, or if the property is no longer licensable.
We may also decide to revoke your licence if we longer consider you to be a fit and proper person. You would have to make representations against this and may appeal to the Residential Property Tribunal.
How to apply
You should apply for a licence within one month of the property becoming licensable.
The date when the property becomes licensable is either when the tenants move in or, if the property is empty, when the tenants are due to move in.
If you are buying a licensable HMO with tenants currently living in the property, the licensable date would be the completion date of sale.
You can submit an application using our Idox online form.
Find out how to create an Idox account or return to a saved application
We recommend that you register for your Idox ID before applying for a licence. This will allow you to save as you go and return to your unfinished application anytime you wish.
First, you need to click the 'Apply for an HMO licence' button below. To register, click 'Log in to save' on the application page.
On the next page, click 'Register for an Idox ID'.
You will receive a confirmation email once you complete the registration. Please ensure you follow the instructions in the email before logging back in to start your online application.
Return to saved applications
You can exit the application at any time by closing your browser. When you next log in, please note it will say ‘Saved as Draft’ in the top left-hand corner of your application; if it does not say that, you have not logged in after registering.
Please read our application guidance notes, which will help you to complete your renewal application.
What happens next
Once you have submitted an application, you will receive a confirmation email from Idox with a DSFX number and a PDF copy of the application attached. This is your evidence of submission and you should keep it in a safe place.
You do not need to contact us to check that we have received your application. We will aim to contact you within 10 working days, though this can take longer during busy periods.
If you have not received a confirmation email, then you may not have submitted an application and you should check your Idox account and draft submissions.
Select a topic below to find out more about HMO licences.
The licence contains both mandatory conditions and Council-imposed conditions. Please read these carefully as failure to comply with conditions is an offence and you may be prosecuted.
You have to provide gas safety certificates to us every year.
If we ask you to carry out works at the property, you must complete these in the time specified on the licence.
It is a legal requirement for the name and address of the licence holder to be made available on a public register, together with details of any manager and information about the licence, such as the permitted number of occupants.
We will apply a £50 discount to your licence if you meet all of the following conditions:
- Your fully completed application is submitted through our online application form
- All of the correct, valid supporting documents are uploaded with the application
- The proposed licence holder and any managers agree to receive licences and any other relevant documents via email
If you decide to withdraw your application, you can receive a refund. The amount of money you get back will depend on the stage of your application:
|Application withdrawal stage||Licence fee refund|
|Withdrawn before processing and acknowledgement||Fee paid|
|Withdrawn after processing but before a property inspection||£240 of the initial application fee and the remaining balance|
|Withdrawn after processing and property inspection||The remaining balance|
|After a final HMO licence is issued||No refund available|
Missed inspection charge
If one of our inspecting officers is unable to gain entry to a property to carry out an inspection, this will be classed as a ‘missed inspection’ and we will charge the licence holder £25.
Where agents are involved in the management of the HMO, we will inform both the agent and the licence holder of the date and time of inspection. You must decide who will provide access to the inspecting officer.
Should you decide to alter the layout, change the maximum number of occupants or change the management arrangements of the HMO, you must tell us and apply for a variation.
We will ensure that the standards are met and the new circumstances are represented on the licence.
You cannot vary a licence to change a licence holder. The new licence holder needs to make a new application.
We will inspect the property at least once during the 5-year licence period.
We will carry out a risk assessment of any hazards that exist at the property, under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS), and you need to carry out remedial work. We will also assess the property to see if you are complying with the licence conditions and the management regulations.
You should ensure that gas appliances and your fire detection system are regularly serviced, and a report on the electrical installation is carried out every five years, fixing any code 1&2 defects. You need to produce all relevant certificates at the inspection.