HMO Licence fees are controlled under Section 63 Housing Act 2004. The Council can require applications to be accompanied by a fixed fee. When fixing fees, the Council may consider all costs incurred in carrying out their HMO licensing functions. This will include all necessary staffing and support costs required in operating a scheme. The fee levels should aim to be cost neutral and will need to be subject to approval before any scheme is formally launched.
There is a need to ensure that fees for any proposed Additional Licensing scheme are proportionate to the Council’s fees for Mandatory Licensing. These are currently based on 5-year licences and banded according to the number of occupiers in the HMO as follows:
|Number of occupiers||Fee|
It is proposed to create a new band covering 3-5 occupiers and charge a fee of £964 for each application.
In order to encourage landlords to make applications as soon as any scheme commences, it is proposed to offer an ‘early bird’ application fee of £800 per application. To qualify, landlords would need to submit a duly made (complete) application within 8 weeks of the scheme launch date.
By offering an ‘early bird’ fee, the Council would seek to ensure sufficient revenue is received early on to assist in the funding and recruitment of staff to operate the scheme. Good landlords who have all of their documentation in order and keep up to date with their legal obligations would be expected to benefit from this incentive. We seek views on these proposals.