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HMO Standards and Conditions

Managing an HMO, especially a licensable HMO requires higher standards to be achieved. Below are a number of guides showing the standards that are required.

Icon for pdf Guidance on HMOs and licensing standards [440.13KB]

General licensing conditions will apply to all licensed HMOs. A list of these can be found in the licence application form available from our Apply for an HMO Licence web page.

Fire precautions

Fire precautions in all properties, particularly HMOs should follow the principles of the LACORS Housing Fire Safety Guidance..  This guidance has been jointly agreed between Mendip District Council and Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service

The Council will take the lead on fire safety in most residential accommodation using the Housing Act 2004.  However, HMOs may require a fire risk assessment which is required under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 enforceable by the fire service.

Minimum bedroom sizes

Licences issued from the 1st October 2018 will have minimum room sizes for rooms used as sleeping accommodation. These are in addition to locally set minimum room sizes.

A room smaller than the specified size must not be used as sleeping accommodation.  Government Guidance is available here HMO licensing reforms.

The minimum sleeping room sizes are:

  • 6.51 mSq for one person over 10 years of age
  • 10.22 mSq for two persons over 10 years of age
  • 4.64 mSq for one child under the age of 10 years
  • 1.5 m minimum ceiling height.  Any area of the room where the ceiling height is less is not counted.

These minimum sizes do not apply to charities providing night shelters or temporary accommodation for people suffering or recovering from drug or alcohol abuse or mental disorders.

Any room of less than 4.64 mSq may not be used as sleeping accommodation. Landlords will need to notify the Council of any room used for sleeping with a floor area of less than 4.64 mSq.

HMO Management regulations

Our HMO management regulations web page explains what duties managers of HMOs have to comply with.


The Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) is the statutory method for assessing housing conditions based on the risk to occupants and visitors.  More information is available on our Property Standards web page.