New HMO Proposals For Brighton and Hove!

  • News
  • New HMO Proposals For Brighton and Hove!

Brighton and Hove Council are now proposing to extend the existing Article 4 Direction. It will now apply to more HMO properties (Houses in Multiple Occupation) throughout the Brighton and Hove area.

An Article 4 Direction will apply to properties smaller than seven beds. They now require planning permission to convert the house into an HMO property.

The Council has done this in five areas within the last year or so. It has already caught out a substantial amount of landlords who did not apply for the planning consent for their property.

In June 2018 the Council decided to extend the boundary in Article 4. They decided to include areas such as Preston Park, East Brighton and Regency as part of the extension. This mainly related to the student occupied areas.

They believe the proposals are fair and make the rules consistent for everyone. Providing long term services to developers and residents. Also preventing the concentration of HMO’s becoming too high before action can be taken.

We have outlined in previous articles the necessary checks for HMO licencing. These are now City wide. If the proposals go ahead then this could cause landlord’s problems in the future. The representations of local landlords and the secretary of state will inform the decision, whichever way it goes.

The local council are trying to address the high cost of housing and shortage of new homes in the area. Pushing young professional people on low incomes to live in HMOs. By doing this they ensure that there is a high demand for them also. However the concentration of HMOs could put extra pressure on community residents. The proposal is not intended to stop HMO development. Instead its intention is to give the public more say. This is by way of managing the number of applications through the planning process in certain neighbourhoods.

We appreciate that most people don’t wish to live next to students or have HMOs but how could it affect landlords?

The affect could be substantial, we would suggest that you look at the proposal immediately. You should already have an HMO licence in respect of your property. If you do not we would suggest that you do so. If your property has already been rented out as an HMO for a period of four years or more under one contract then you have prescription rights. You will need to show the Council that you have already used it as an HMO property for a period of four years and so do not require planning. If you do not have an HMO licence we suggest that you apply for one to show that you are making an effort to get up to standard. This is critical if not done already.

These proposals could affect so many people and have a detrimental effect to certain parts of the market such as three bed properties. If a landlord now has to have a licence for a three bed flat as well as planning it may put them off long term. So they only rent it out as a two bed which then reduces the market for young professionals to share. This could have a detrimental affect rather than the positive that the council are looking at. We see both sides of the argument but is it really required?

What has this done for the market in Brighton and Hove?

The council in their wisdom have used the Lewes Road area to create student accommodation for the local universities. This includes the University of Brighton and the University of Sussex. Most of this student accommodation is in a pod based system rather than a student house. They have used the Lewes Road area as a corridor for student accommodation and trying to move this out of the city centre. It means there is a few minutes walk from the accommodation to the University of Brighton and University of Sussex. All of these large blocks now have a location close for the students. It does however mean that they have been very difficult when it comes to HMO properties for student accommodation. There are still some universities that are in Hove. Some in the central Hove location but most are now in this area. This means people are looking to move into the Brighton and Hove area that don’t want to be near student accommodation maybe starting to rent in Hove rather than through the city centre and down the Lewes Road area.

What affect has this had on the market?

We have found that three bedroom properties have become extremely popular to such an extend that the rental figures have increased dramatically. The new proposals have meant that landlords have now additional requirements that they have to adhere to and therefore landlords decide it is not commercial in this regard. If you have a property that is on two floors and have three bedrooms or more and you want to rent the property to sharers then you need to have a HMO license. There are certain requirements when it comes to a license to include minimum size rooms. They also include fire regulations and other legal documentation from the local authority. This has meant that a lot of landlords have decided to rent to families over professional sharers which has reduced the overall three bed market quite substantially.

Unfortunately, this will not change at any point in the future. The council are forever making changes and looking to improve housing stock.

There are various new Acts such as the Unfit for human habitation Bill and the new Renters Reform Bill which will be coming out as white paper this year. This will result in a substantial amount of new requirements for landlords. These enclose different types of compliance.

Do you want landlords building insurance?

Our sister company Iinsure 365 deals specifically with landlords building insurance and have in excess of 100 five star google reviews. They can give you instant quotes from one through to three at anytime and please do not hesitate to click here if you want a residential quote.

Do you have a commercial property? Are you looking for commercial property insurance? Why not click here for an instant quote.

Iinsure are always providing new products and why not follow them on their social media here.

See all News Posts
google-review Review
17:30 22 Feb 24
Have been very accommodating and helpful when calling agents. They have been very helpful in being able to secure a house for students.
16:42 21 Feb 24
Went above and beyond to get things sorted for me
Brittany Stace
Brittany Stace
11:18 24 Jan 24
Harringtons have been incredibly helpful and supportive of us as new renters and they have been super efficient in getting all of the documents sent through and signed in such a short period of time. Thank you!
Georgie Prebble
Georgie Prebble
20:36 05 Jan 24
Jade Innes
Jade Innes
10:24 04 Jan 24
So far the service has been good. The staff are very friendly and quick to respond to any questions and requests.
Polly Smith
Polly Smith
11:17 28 Dec 23
we chose this letting agents as they chose a good bills company that is much cheaper than other agents. When viewing houses the staff were very friendly and have been very helpful in answering our questions and making the process as easy as possible.
Emma Howe
Emma Howe
16:06 14 Nov 23
I would rate Harringtons Lettings a 5/5. Very lovely on the phone and very quick and easy to communicate with via email. Any problems have been resolved in no time at all. So far so good!I found Harringtons via Rightmove.
Akwisitions Feedback
Akwisitions Feedback
16:25 30 Oct 23
Very responsive and super helpful throughout the process. Highly recommended!
Chloe Ballard
Chloe Ballard
17:28 02 Oct 23
Although I have only been renting with Harringtons for a short period of time, I have had nothing but a positive experience. From viewing to admin updates. The admin team especially are very polite and quick to respond and I have no doubt that the rest of my tenancy will run smoothly. I would recommend to anyone considering renting in brighton.
Matthew Ball
Matthew Ball
11:46 19 Sep 23
Professional communication with tenant although entirely impersonal. There was a bigger disconnect in their communication with the landlord in most cases, which seemed to be either slow or non-existent (discovered after contacting the landlord directly).Property was full of spider webs on day 1 despite apparently being professionally cleaned. Took a day off of work to clean it on move out day, leaving it cleaner than when it received but still had to pay part of the deposit for professional cleaning.It has been a while since I have rented, but I'll avoid letting agencies completely now if this is anything close to the average renting experience.
Ronan SK
Ronan SK
12:38 12 Sep 23
Great professionalism/communciation from the start up until the end of my tenancy. Definitely set the standards for what agencies should be like. Highly recommend to those within Brighton.
Daniel Sutton
Daniel Sutton
10:29 24 Aug 23
I have rented with Harringtons Lettings before and have always found the agents to be quick, efficient, friendly and helpful. I loved their service so much I have chosen to rent with Harringtons again. Faultless 😊
See All Reviews
Get in Touch

Send a message to a member of our team and we'll be happy to answer your questions!

Send a Message

Register for Property Alerts

Let us know what you're looking for and we'll email you with matching properties when they become available.

Make an Enquiry

Please complete the form below and a member of our team will be in touch shortly.