Additional HMO Licence

In April 2017 we approved a borough wide Additional HMO licensing scheme. An Additional HMO is any HMO that does not require a Mandatory HMO licence.  An Additional HMO is therefore an HMO occupied by three or four people who live together as two or more households and who share kitchen, bathroom or WC facilities. Two unrelated people living together is not classed as a HMO. Additional HMO licences are valid for 5 years.

Because we operate an Additional HMO licensing scheme, all HMO’s in Redbridge are required to be licensed. Failure to licence a HMO may result in a prosecution in court or a financial penalty of up to £30K.

What is a household?

A household is either a single person or members of the same family who live together. A family includes people who are:

  • married or living together - including people in same-sex relationships
  • relatives or half-relatives, for example, grandparents, aunts, uncles, siblings
  • step-parents and step-children
  • a foster child living with a foster parent (s) is treated as living in the same household


Minimum sleeping room sizes

From 1 October 2018 local housing authorities must impose conditions as to the minimum room size which may be occupied as sleeping accommodation in the HMO. A room smaller than the specified size must not be used as sleeping accommodation, and communal space in other parts of the HMO cannot be used to compensate for rooms smaller than the prescribed minimum. The purpose of this condition is to reduce overcrowding in HMOs. The standards adopted are similar, but not identical to, those relating to overcrowding in dwellings under section 326 of the Housing Act 1985.

What is the minimum sleeping room size?

  • 6.51 m 2 for one person over 10 years of age
  • 10.22 m 2 for two persons over 10 years of age
  • 4.64 m 2 for one child under the age of 10 years

The minimum size for sleeping accommodation does not apply to charities providing night shelters or temporary accommodation for people suffering or recovering from drug or alcohol abuse or mental disorders.

 It will also be a mandatory condition that any room of less than 4.64 m 2 must not be used as sleeping accommodation and the landlord will need to notify the local housing authority of any room in the HMO with a floor area of less than 4.64 m2. These minimum room sizes will apply to all mandatory HMO and additional licences that are approved or renewed on or after 1 October 2018. Any area of the room in which the ceiling height is less than 1.5m cannot be counted towards the minimum room size.


Adopted HMO standards

Whilst the mandatory room sizes are the statutory minimum, local housing authorities will continue to have discretion to set their own higher standards within licence conditions, but must not set lower standards. Find out more about the HMO standards  that have been adopted by Redbridge and other east London authorities.


HMO fees 

Number of households

Fee on Application 

First installment

Grant of a licence

Second installment

Total fee

Base fee








































Advisory visit

An advisory visit to give guidance on HMO requirements can be arranged with a Housing Enforcement Officer upon request. There is a fee of £250 for this service.

To arrange an advisory visit please email 

What you need before making an Additional HMO Property Licence application

You will need to upload or e-mail copies of the following:

  • floor plans (these may be prepared by the applicant or the proposed licence holder. They do not have to be drawn up by an architect or surveyor) showing the location of fire exits, smoke alarms, heat detectors and any emergency lighting
  • an electrical installation condition report carried out within the previous five years
  • if gas is supplied to the property; the current gas safety certificate
  • fire risk assessment – see below for more information
  • commissioning and testing certificates for the fire alarm system


Minimum standards

Please ensure you read the Redbridge minimum property standards (PDF 421KB) before applying for a licence. 

Fire Risk Assessments

Landlords and/or managing agents of HMO’s have a duty to carry out fire risk assessments and install fire precaution measures.

For more detailed guidance, view the HM Government guidance Fire Safety Risk Assessment - Sleeping Accommodation (PDF 2.82MB).


Compliance visit

There will be a compliance visit before the Additional HMO Licence is granted. A Housing Enforcement Officer will contact the proposed licence holder to arrange this visit. The purpose of this visit is to ensure that the HMO is compliant with fire safety and room size requirements and has sufficient kitchen, bathroom and WC facilities for the proposed number of occupiers. Any additional licence conditions that may need to be added to the HMO licence to satisfy requirements will be agreed at the time of this visit with the proposed licence holder.

The fire precaution measures that will be requested will be in accordance with the guidance contained within the LACORS Housing Fire Safety Guidance (PDF 1.57MB).

If on carrying out this visit the Housing Enforcement Officer is required to give the proposed licence holder advice concerning the works required to bring the HMO up to a standard that is licensable, then the visit will be considered to have been an advisory visit and the Council will charge the proposed licence holder the advisory visit fee of £250.



Certain HMOs are exempt – see schedule 14 Housing Act 2004:

HMO Exemption List



When you are granted an Additional HMO licence there will be conditions attached to the licence that you will need to comply with. At any time during the length of your licence period the Council may inspect the HMO to ascertain whether or not the licence conditions are being complied with. It is an offence to fail to comply with a licence condition without reasonable excuse. A breach of licence conditions may result in a prosecution or financial penalty up to £30K.

Additional HMO licence conditions



You should enquire about renewing your Additional HMO licence if it is about to expire and you still wish to privately rent the property in the same way it was being rented before. We recommend you enquire 3 months before your current licence expires.

Please inform us of any change in circumstances that may affect the Additional HMO licence, for example:

  • an increase in the number of occupiers, such that the HMO requires a Mandatory licence
  • the provision of additional kitchen, bathroom or WC facilities
  • the provision of additional bedrooms or communal living areas


Planning permission

Planning permission is required for any HMO that is occupied by 7 or more unrelated persons. If the Council grant an HMO licence this does not mean that planning permission where required is also granted.

You will need to email the Planning Department.


Contact us


Property Licensing Team
10th Floor
Lynton House
255-259 High Road
Ilford IG1 1NY


Apply for an Additional HMO property Licence


Redbridge Refund Policy (PDF 264KB)

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