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F E Smith
F E Smith, Advocate
Category: Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 18744
Experience:  I have been practising for 30 years.
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On the farm where I grew up we are putting out rooms as

Customer Question

On the farm where I grew up we are putting out rooms as bed-sits to generate income. There are 6 bedrooms and 2 apartments. The bedrooms share 2 kitchens and 2 bathrooms. What do we need to do to be legal? Situated in southern UK.
Many thanks
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Property Law
Expert:  Virtual-mod replied 1 year ago.

I've been working hard to find a Professional to assist you with your question, but sometimes finding the right Professional can take a little longer than expected.

I wonder whether you're ok with continuing to wait for an answer. If you are, please let me know and I will continue my search. If not, feel free to let me know and I will cancel this question for you.

Thank you!
Expert:  Nicola-mod replied 1 year ago.
I apologise as we have not yet been able to find a Professional to assist you. Do you wish for me to continue to search for someone to assist you or would you like for us to close your question at this time?
Thank you for your patience,
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'll assume it's ok to let rooms out. We can leave the question.
Expert:  F E Smith replied 1 year ago.

If this was just one room that you are letting out and you lived in the property then you don’t need anything.

However if it’s more than one room that you are letting out you are probably going to need planning for running a guesthouse if you are going to provide any meals . If you are simply letting out rooms as self-contained accommodation then you will not need planning Permission bought you are going to need to register the property as a House in Multiple Occupation. If you Google “what is an HMO” it will give you plenty of reading. Different local authorities have different requirements and depending on the layout it may need to be registered even if not licensed. The rules regarding HMO are quite complicated and subject to a lot of interpretation.

I would start with speaking to the or local authority to tell them exactly what the layout is going to be and ask whether you are required to register it as HMO. It’s better doing that in writing.

If you are letting these out on Assured Shorthold Tenancies, and the tenants are providing a deposit, then you have to place the deposit in a recognise scheme (there are expensive penalties for failure to do so), you have to provide an energy performance certificate, gas safety certificate every year, and have the electrical system tested recently. You also have to provide the How to Rent in England booklet on the property and you need to be registered with the local authority is a landlord regardless of whether it’s HMO or not. Different local authorities have different criteria.

You need to provide the tenancy agreement and a rent book.

If you don’t want to fall foul of the letting out rules, you might want to speak to a letting agent.

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