Licences for accommodation
Licences - houses in multiple occupancy Licensing Services in partnership with other council services and Lothian and Borders Police and Fire Service administers the licensing scheme for houses in multiple occupation (HMOs). HMO's cover residential accommodation such as shared flats and houses, hostels and halls of residence.
The licences are issued under the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982 (Licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation) Order 2000. This is a mandatory licence and if you operate an HMO without a licence, you are breaking the law.
What qualifies as a House in Multiple Occupancy (HMO)
An HMO is any rented property which is the main home for three or more people who are from two or more different families - that is, they are not closely related to each other, married or living as a couple. It can sometimes be quite complicated to work out when a licence is needed. If you want help in working out whether the law applies to you or your house, then please contact Environmental Health on 01506 775400 for advice. Please remember that if you need a licence but do not get one, then you are breaking the law and could be prosecuted.
Application fees are detailed in the document below and additional information of fees may be found on the application form also below.
If you own a property which is rented out as an HMO, then you must get a licence from West Lothian Council