Government legislation for licensing HMOs, under the Housing Act 2004, has changed.

Cumbria Tourism is aware that for many businesses they have been unaware of this change and it has worked with the Business Task Force to seek clarity on this issue. It has also requested a consistency of approach across all local authorities which SLDC will take up on our behalf at the housing standards officer meeting.

In the meantime please find below a summary of the changes, indicative costs and further contact information.

In essence, the 3 storey qualification has been removed and a licence is now if the HMO (including staff accommodation), contains “five or more unrelated people.” It is now an offence to operate without a licence where one is needed.

Local authorities are responsible for implementing and will inspect properties to ensure complying with relevant standards and legislation. The fees will vary by LA but as an example, at SLDC, the licence fee is £415 for a house/accommodation block with up to 5 bedrooms. There is an extra £30 charge for each extra letting bedroom – up to max of £600. A licence usually lasts 5 five years and the renewal fee – £250.

If a landlord is found to be operating without a licence they will be subject to legal action. Fines can be up to £30,000.


For further information, please see below.

For further information

Contact The PR Team on
01539 822222 or