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Apply for a licence for a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO)

​Landlords in the borough of Rochdale must obtain a HMO licence from Rochdale Borough Council if they operate a House in Multiple Occupation.

Mandatory licence: the property has 3 or more storeys, with 5 or more occupants forming 2 or more households.

Additional licence: the property has 3 or more unrelated occupants forming 2 or more households.

Apply or renew for a licence

Use this process to apply for a HMO licence or to renew an existing HMO licence.

  1. Complete the application form.
  2. Post your original documents to us along with your cheque at the address on this page. If you're renewing an existing licence please post your updated documents.
  3. Your documents will include:
    • Evidence of permanent residential address from all parties.
    • Building regulations completion certificate, if applicable.
    • Current fire alarm test certificate.
    • Current emergency lighting test certificate.
    • Service contract for alarm and safety systems.
    • Current landlord's gas safety certificate.
    • Current period test certificate for the electrical installation.
    • Current PAT (portable appliance testing) certificate if applicable.
    • Fire safety risk assessment.
    • Licensing fee.
  4. Your payment will depend on the number of habitable rooms within your HMO - see licence fees below. If you're unsure about how much to pay, please get in touch with us.
  5. We'll aim to make a decision on your application within 28 working days.
  6. Once we've made a decision we'll return your documents by post.
  7. Please note this document is in pdf format for you to download and print. This is so you can get it signed by the applicant, licence holder, managing agent and person in control. 
Application form for a House in Multiple Occupation licence (1.2MB pdf)

​Licence fees

A licence will normally last for 5 years but in certain circumstances a licence can be granted for a shorter period.

The cost of a 5 year licence is: £768 plus £39 inspection fee per habitable room.

Example of how a licence fee could work. The example below shows the cost of a HMO with:

  •  8 bedrooms - classed as habitable rooms 
  • 1 communal kitchen
  • 1 communal lounge - classed as a habitable room
  • 1 communal dining room - classed as a habitable room
  • 2 bath or shower rooms
  • ​2 separate water closets

There are 10 habitable rooms as indicated.

The costs are broken down as follows:

  1. The standard application fee is £768.
  2. The inspection fee of 10 habitable rooms at £39 each totals £390.
  3. The total fee for 5 years is £1,158 - this is the standard application fee plus the total inspection fee. This would work out at £231.60 per year.      

 ​​What if my licence is refused?

  1. We ask you to contact us using the contact details on this page, initially to try and resolve the issue.
  2. If you feel the council has acted unfairly by failing to grant, revoking or imposing certain sanctions on your licence, you can appeal to the Residential Property Tribunal (RPT).

    The RPT is an expert independent tribunal that will act instead of the county court to either overturn or confirm the council’s decision. The RPT cannot award costs unless it is found that one party acted unreasonably.​ How to solve a residential property dispute.

Related pages


01706 926223

Phone: Monday-Friday 9am-5pm.

Private Sector Housing
Number One Riverside
Smith Street
Rochdale OL16 1XU