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Complaints about HMOs

HMOs are more likely to be a cause for complaint by tenants or neighbours than other types of housing.

Unlicensed HMOs

The council needs to be informed about HMOs which should be licensed but are not. If you believe a property is an HMO and is occupied by five or more people, please check the list of properties [319kb]which have an HMO licence in Hillingdon to see if the council has received a licence application. If the HMO is not on the list of HMO licenced properties, contact the council.

Complaints by tenants and neighbours

If you are living in an HMO, or are a neighbour, and are unhappy with the physical conditions, the presence of health and safety hazards, or the number of people living in the property, you should make a report to the council so that an officer can investigate. You should also report to the council if you believe the HMO should be licenced but is not.

It is an offence for an owner or manager of an HMO to fail to apply for a licence for a licensable property, or allow a property to be occupied by more people than are permitted on the licence. A fine of up to £20,000 may be imposed. In addition, breaking any of the licence conditions can result in fines of up to £5,000 for each offence.

Complaints by tenants about rent

A tenant living in a property that should be licensed, but is not, can apply to a Residential Property Tribunal to claim back any rent they have paid during the unlicensed period (up to a limit of 12 months). The council can also reclaim any housing benefit that has been paid during the time the property was without a licence.

Complaints by neighbours

For complaints about disturbances caused by such issues as noise, rubbish or illegal behaviour, contact the council's anti-social behaviour investigations team, or the out of hours service..

Freedom of information requests (FOI)

The council receives a large number of FOI about standards in the private rented sector. Here is some of the most frequently requested data.

Number of complaints about conditions in privately rented properties: 

Year     Total     
2009346
2010576
2011646
2012646
2013698
2014596
2015460

Ten prosecutions have led to convictions of landlords since 2009, with fines ranging from £1,900 to £58,500. Offences include failing to obtain an HMO licence, failing to comply with an HMO licence condition, failing to comply with HMO Management Regulations, failing to comply with a Prohibition Order, providing false information.

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Article utilities:  Bookmark and Share Print Print this page Last updated: 11 Mar 2016 at 08:59