Shared housing

Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO)

Find licensed HMOs in Newport

Report a rogue landlord

Under Newport City Council’s HMO licensing scheme a property must be licensed if there are 3 or more unrelated people forming more than 2 households in the same building.

A property must be licensed if there are 3 or more unrelated people forming more than 2 households in the same building

Houses requiring a licence

Shared houses

Where people live together as a group, each with their own bedroom and sharing all other rooms including a communal living space.


Where people share a bathroom, toilet, kitchen etc, but otherwise live independently of others.

Converted self-contained flats

Where the conversion does not meet the requirements of the 1991 Building Regulations and less than two thirds of the flats are owner occupied.

Occupiers live in a self-contained unit, sharing no facilities, often behind one access door off a common area.

Individual flats occupied by 3 or more unrelated people

Where occupiers live together as a group, each with exclusive use of a bedroom but sharing all other facilities, including a communal living space within the flat.

This applies even if the property has been converted to the 1991 Building Regulations.

Hostels, guesthouses, bed and breakfast

Occupiers have no other permanent place of residence within the UK.

Includes properties used by local councils to house homeless people.

Resident landlords

A landlord living in the same building as 3 or more unrelated people.

Also any combination of the above property types which make up the same building.

HMO licensing relates to the number of unrelated people occupying a property and is not affected by joint tenancy agreements, company let agreements, council tax payee responsibility, housing benefit claimants, homeless.

Single households

Section 258 of the Housing Act 2004 specifies when people are regarded as not forming a single household.

To count as a single household, people must be members of the same family, including married couples, or those living as husband and wife, including those in an equivalent same sex relationship, or where one of them is a relative of the other.

'Relative' includes parent, grandparent, child, grandchild, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, nephew, niece or cousin, and half relatives, step-children and foster children.

Apply for a HMO Licence

Read about applying for a HMO licence if you rent out a property in Newport as a HMO

HMO management

Read What is expected of a HMO Manager (pdf)

Landlords and managers of HMOs in Newport should be aware of the legal responsibilities and requirements to look after the property and tenants


It is a legal requirement to licence HMOs.

It is an offence under Section 72 (1) of the Housing Act 2004 for a person in control or managing a HMO not to license a property which requires a licence and can be subject to a fine of up to £20,000 on conviction.

The majority of Newport landlords offer good quality living accommodation and operate within the law but there are some who are less responsible.

Report a rogue landlord

Converting or buying a HMO

If you are thinking of converting a property to an HMO the council offers a free advisory pre-licence inspection service.

A council officer will inspect the property and give you a schedule of work to consider.

There is no obligation for you to complete the work if the property is not then multi-occupied.

To arrange a pre-licence inspection email

Some property conversions may need planning or building regulations approval, please ask for advice. 


Use our online contact form or contact Newport City Council and ask for the environmental health HMO team.