Planning legislation and building regulations

In addition to the Housing Act 2004, the Building Regulations 2000 (as amended) and the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 may also apply to houses in multiple occupation. 

As a general rule, HMOs with seven or more occupants require planning permission, but any changes to the HMO, such as conversions and provision of additional amenities, may be subject to planning permission, building regulations and conservation requirements.

As each HMO is individual, it is recommended you contact the appropriate department to ensure your property complies with the necessary legislation.

Article 4 Direction

On Tuesday 11 June 2019, the council's Cabinet approved the making of an Article 4 Direction affecting the St. Paul’s ward under the Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) Order 2015, as amended. This Direction will remove permitted development rights for developments involving a change of use of a dwelling (use class C3) to a House in Multiple Occupation (use class C4). This means that planning permission will be required before starting a development of this nature.

Public consultation was conducted for 21 days until Tuesday 16 July 2019. Feedback from this was considered by Cabinet on 8 October 2019 and the decision was made to confirm the Direction. Read the Cabinet report to learn more.

The Direction came into force Thursday 11 June 2020.

You can download a copy of the Direction, including a map defining the area covered here.