Make an application
Licence holders and managers (if identified) can be the landlord, manager or another person or body who has control of the property. They must:
- be over 18 years old
- pass the 'fit and proper person' test
- not live abroad
- not be in prison
If any of the above apply then another person or body will need to be appointed as the licence holder and manager (if identified).
Before you apply
If you do not already have a Royal Greenwich account, you'll need to register before you begin your application. This will enable you to save an incomplete form and come back to it later.
You should also get the relevant information and documents ready.
Information you need to provide
The form will ask you for some details. It may help save time if you prepare these in advance:
- credit card or debit card details for payment
- registration number if you're a company or charity
- professional landlord organisation membership or registration number if you're a member
- application reference of any other HMO licence you have with the Royal Borough of Greenwich
- the licence holders address will appear on a public register of HMOs we are legally required to provide - you may therefore wish to consider an alternative address, for example a business or PO Box address (you cannot use the HMO address unless the licence holder is a resident)
- manager contact details if you appoint someone to manage the HMO - the address you give for the manager will appear on a public register of HMOs we are legally required to provide, you may therefore wish to consider an alternative address (you cannot use the HMO address unless the manager is a resident)
- contact details of any mortgage company, joint freeholder and other interested parties in the property as we need to inform them of your application.
Documents you need to provide
The application form will prompt you for the documents you'll need to submit, but it may help save time if you prepare electronic versions (such as a scan or photograph) of these in advance:
- floor plans for the property - these either need to be to scale (and the scale shown, for example 1:50) or the dimensions of the rooms annotated on the plans; they will need to show the use of each room, the layout, facilities and where the fire precautions (if any) are, for example location of fire detectors, emergency lighting, fire blankets and fire doors
- latest gas safety certificate if the property has gas
- latest Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR - previously known as Periodic Electrical Inspection Report)
- copy of criminal convictions disclosure for both the licence holder and the manager of the property, which is less than 12 months old.
We recommend that if you regularly require either a standard or enhanced DBS you use the DBS Update Service. This service is provided by the government for an annual charge of £13. It allows you to obtain your DBS certificate at any time without having to apply and pay again. This does not work for basic disclosures.
The above four (three if the HMO does not have gas) documents have to be provided with the application. Failure to do so will mean that your application cannot be processed and will be rejected. The fee you paid will be retained if this happens.
- Portal Appliance Test (PAT) reports if you provide portable electrical equipment such as kettles and microwave ovens
- latest Energy Performance Certificate
- latest inspection certificates or log book records for your automatic fire detection or emergency lighting systems, if applicable
- evidence the furniture and fittings you provide comply with fire safety regulations
- copies of current tenancy agreements
- copies of inventory lists
- copy of management contract if you use a managing agent
- latest asbestos report if there is asbestos in your HMO
Keep your certificates up to date
Most certificates have an expiry date and may need to be renewed, for example your annual landlords gas safety certificate and your annual fire alarm certificate. Please remember that it is your responsibility to keep your certification up to date and we may require you to produce these documents as required by the conditions attached to your licence.
To apply, complete the online form and pay by credit or debit card.
After you apply
If you do not need a licence, the application form will inform you and you'll receive a confirmation by email. If you need a licence and have completed your application, you'll receive a confirmation of your application and payment.
Once we are in receipt of a full and complete application from you we aim to process your application in 12 weeks. Please note a full and complete application consists of an application form, initial payment and all required documentation. If an incomplete application is submitted we will let you know what is missing and give you one opportunity to provide what is required before we reject the application, however please note the payment made is not refundable.
Please contact us using firstname.lastname@example.org if you have not heard from us and have not received your decision in 12 weeks after submitting your application.
The Council will issue a proposed licence with the licence terms or the reasons we cannot grant one. We'll consult with all bound and interested parties in the property, including the Fire and Rescue Authority. After the consultation, we'll then issue or refuse to issue the licence. You'll receive full details of this process in your confirmation email.
If the Royal Borough of Greenwich has not decided your application in 52 weeks from receipt of a full and complete application (as defined above), tacit consent will apply and you will be able to operate your HMO as though the Royal Borough of Greenwich has granted your licence unconditionally. In exceptional circumstances the Royal Borough of Greenwich may extend this period once. The applicant will be notified of the reason and time period of the extension if an extension is granted by the Head of Service. In any circumstance an extension cannot be longer than 12 weeks from the expiry of the initial 52 week period.
The licence conditions will cover the main regulations and standards you must meet. In some cases, they may also require the manager to go on a training course or restrict occupiers from using some parts of the building.
The Council will inspect every HMO that has a licence to make sure they comply with all requirements and licensing conditions. We'll inspect higher-risk properties first. The level of risk depends on factors such as property condition, how it's managed and its previous history.