New Guidance On Hmo Room Size Regulations Unveiled
The new guidance covering minimum room size regulations for HMOs has been welcomed by one landlords' association.
The guidance is aimed at councils and has been published by the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government for houses in multiple occupation (HMOs).
The guidance also defines the sanctions for landlords who breach the minimum room size rules.
The government says that a breach will take place if:
* A landlord knowingly permits the HMO to be occupied by more people or households than are authorised by their licence
* If they fail to comply with their license conditions such as a prohibition against occupation as sleeping accommodation.
Take action against landlords
The RLA says it has been concerned that councils will have been required to take action against those landlords where, for example, a tenant had given birth so a room contained two people when it is designated for one person.
The RLA says that if the council sought to evict during this scenario then this would be unlawful discrimination and the new guidance has clarified the guidelines for councils to ensure that eviction situations such as this will not occur.
The RLA's policy director, David Smith, said: "We welcome the new guidance and it reflects the work done between the government and the RLA to address serious concerns over the consequences of room size changes.
"The government has listened to our concerns and the document provides greater assurances to tenants and landlords alike."
Landlords based overseas leave the UK's rental sector
Meanwhile, it's been revealed that landlords who are based overseas are leaving the UK's private rental sector.
That's according to an index published by Hamptons International which found that the number of properties being let by a landlord based abroad is at its lowest level for nearly a decade.
The firm says that the proportion of properties being let by landlords fell from 14.4% of homes in 2010 to just 5.8% at the end of 2018.
The real estate firm says that every region in the UK saw a drop in the number of overseas-based landlords with the capital seeing the sharpest decline.
The firm adds that the proportion of landlords has dropped by 10% in the South East and in the North East and East Midlands it fell by 6%.
Outside of London, the highest proportion of properties being rented by landlords who are living overseas is in Yorkshire and the Humber with a 6.7% share.