Nov 30, 2021
Question Answer
General HMO questions    
  Are the planning department and Licensing teams working more closely than they have done historically to ensure that a Licensed HMO property also has the relevant C4 usage, in light of the article 4 direction in 2012? Whilst it was never previously enforced or checked it seems this has changed of late.   Yes, we do work very closely with our planning team and consult with them when we have applications that do not appear to have established use or that are new properties into licensing.   We may grant a licence but advise the licence holder to seek the correct permission.   However we do not enforce the Planning legislation, this would be the Planning team.   If the correct permission is not granted then the licence will expire. We would most likely refuse further applications. A Temporary Exemption Notice could be applied for if the licence holder needed to reduce numbers to take it out of HMO use.   The property may remain privately rented and may need a Selective licence if within the designation
  How are you going to improve the HMO online application process going forward? My recent application was met with no support. I could not talk to a person, emails were not returned. The application process has bugs in it and even the invoicing system does not work correctly sending out incorrect notifications.  Given the amount of money we pay, I would expect to have some level of support especially as the application is met with deadlines we have to adhere too and penalities for getting the application wrong. Thank you.     We are currently in the process of tendering for a new IT system. However, this will not be live for about 18 months. Part of the new system is the ability to build a new application form and this is our aim.   If you are having problems making an application please do email   We shall be raising this with the team and make sure you are replied to. I can only apologies if my team have failed to respond to your emails, this is very poor customer service. If you forward me the email you sent, I will investigate what happened.
  I might have this wrong but it seems that “sui generis” HMOs don’t have to comply to the same regulations normal HMOs do, eg next door to us there is a “Sui Generis” HMO that has no lounge, or has there been a relaxing of regulations across the board respect of communal amenity space? The problem being that the tenants just use the garden as their lounge and set up their sound systems during the warm weather months which has generated multiple noise nuisance complaints from the local residents.     Sui Generis is a planning use class and is not connected to the issuing of a licence, other than we may consult with planning about the application to make sure they have been granted that use class by the planning department.   Without the address of the property we would not be able to comment on the layout. However, we have licenced some HMOs that do not have a separate living room. However, they would need to have larger bedrooms, so living and dining would be accommodated in the bedroom.   Our guidance space standards can be found on the website page under resources and documents.   Mandatory Licensing for HMO’s – Nottingham City Council   If you are receiving noise complaints please report this to us at and we can review the address.  
Accreditation questions    
  Why is the benefit of being a compliant accredited landlord, being eroded at each licence fee review?  A former explanation was that many landlords were accredited and that the schemes did not raise as much money as expected – why is the cost shortfall not levied on the 80% non-accredited and unlicensed landlords?   We have set the accredited fee to be lower as the accredited providers will inspect the HMO properties. This reduces the burden on the Council to inspect. We meet with the Accreditation partners regularly and sit on their review panels and tribunals. The accredited providers will also investigate some of the lower risk complaints again reducing the burden on the council to investigate. The accredited partners do share data with the council and refer any members that have not been co-operative and failed to complete safety improvement works or meet the code standards and application criteria’s. The code standards are generally set higher than the statutory minimum. We have received a higher proportion of accredited applications than forecast at the start of the scheme and this will mean the scheme receives less income than forecast and this is managed via close monitoring of the income and expenditure. We do have a fee policy available on the website now that sets out when the accredited fee can and cannot be applied for. The fee is reviewed annually and currently there is no plan to increase the HMO accredited fee.  
General Selective Licensing questions    
  Given the Selective Licensing Scheme is now well established, when the scheme is renewed for another 5 years will it be possible to pay for the license on a monthly basis and rather than 5 years up front.     This was considered when the current scheme was introduced and it was decided that it was going to be too complex, both financially and legally, and would add additional costs to the process so was not pursued. It is unlikely this will change for any future scheme.
  What happens to properties that are refused a licence?     This depends on the circumstances of why a licence was refused. Licences can be refused for various reasons. There is an appeals process to the tribunal service which would decide if the refusal was correct.
If you wish to discuss a particular scenario we’d be happy to discuss further –
  For clarity, under Selective Licensing, the Accredited fees went from £480 to £670 (£190 increase) and the non-accredited price went from £780 to £890 (£110 increase).  Given that the accreditated landlords make up 20%, as per Matt’s presentation, why were the most compliant landlords penalised?  What if any review is occuring about this dicrepancy?  What message does this send about the value of accreditation?     The Council does continue to recognise and support accreditation. At the last review it was identified that most of the part A process was similar for both accredited and non-accredited landlords and that the difference was mainly in the part B element of the fee. There is still a significant gap between accredited and non-accredited licence fees.
  Are Selective Licensing staff aware of Right to Manage companies and the legislation that covers this area? There is no section on a Selective Licensing Application for an Applicant to identify an RTM Company who has (legally) taken over the Freeholders responsibilities under the terms of a lease…. and therefore you are granting licences without the knowledge of RTM Freehold Managers. Can this be reviewed given there are over 1000 RTM Companies in Nottingham City.     We would be happy to look into this further. Our understanding was the application form does cater for the relevant types of people/companies involved in properties, but this is something we can look into. We believe the RTM would come under a company so the applicant or proposed licence holder or manager that is being put down as the RTM company would identify themselves at that point on the application form.

  Civil penalties were imposed on just 0.1% of rented properties. There were only 0.08% prosecutions across the rental property market. Each successful prosecution for an offence under selective licensing cost between half a million and one million pounds! This shows that the overwhelming majority of landlords are excellent and selective licensing is an extremely wasteful overhead that simply employs more staff. Landlords could spend more money on properties if they were not paying great deal of money to NCC for an expensive service. How can you possibly justify a second scheme?   No decision has been made about a second scheme and any second scheme that is proposed would go out for a full consultation.   These figures are also not a true representation of the work we do. Most of our cases get sorted informally, so we could visit a property with issues, we would contact the licence holder and they would sort any issues immediately or in a timeframe we set. This means we do not have to progress to CPN and prosecution stage.   They are powers we only want to use as a very last resort and take months and months of investigations and evidence gathering and can be costly – so we also try to sort things informally with licence holders. Sometimes we have to write to landlords and say they are at risk of a CPN if nothing is done, but in most circumstances they comply and issues are sorted.   We are however promoting more of this informal work we do on our social media channels – @Nottmrenters on Facebook and Twitter    
  My question is about the selective licence for private landlords: I have waited for my licence to be issued for about 16 ot 18 months and when we were infomred that licence is granted I was expecting it to last for 5 years but the expiery date on the letter was 3.5 years (pressumably taking into accout the delay time between when I applied and when it was granted). I have raised that issue at the time but my letter was ignored. Can you explain on what bases the waiting time is used to shorten the licence length? On a side note how is the money we pay for the licence used in Nottingham?       Our understanding in this scenario, is that when you applied for the licence you complied with your obligations to ensure that you had applied for a licence and as such were protecting yourself by complying with your legal obligation. At the time the licence was issued, we understand we issued a licence from the date of application, when you had discharged your legal obligations.   A breakdown of the fee is available on the website
Block Licence questions    
  Should we have a block application for blocks of flats, this was not available to us when the application began, can we stay as we are with the individual for each flat in the block or should we convert to a block? when i say block these are two blocks of 6 flats which all have their own address they are not part of a house with rooms classified as being part of a block which is more like a HMO really is it? if we should have had a block we have paid for each flat is that correct?     The Block Fee policy is available on the website. The policy is not suitable and cannot be applied for all situations / circumstances.   Where your situation does align with the block policy it may not be in your financial interests to apply for a block licence. There are examples within the policy.
Also, there are additional licence conditions that apply to block licences, compared to individual licences
The block licence policy and fee information can be found at under the Block licence application drop down towards the bottom of the pages  
  In relation to block licences, is there any ideas of the costs as compared to selective licences?     Within the Block Fee policy there are some examples of how the fee is calculated, which will help you to understand if it is financially beneficial to apply for a block licence.
Also, there are additional licence conditions that apply to block licences, compared to individual licences
The block licence policy and fee information can be found at under the Block licence application drop down towards the bottom of the pages  
  I have 2 flats in a block of 6 units…how does the block management affect that? Currently I have 2 separate licenses. W.   In future do I need only 1 block management license, or do I need no separate licenses as block is licensed?     You can choose if you wish to apply for a block or have 2 single licences in the future. For just 2 flats, you would have to see if the policy applied to you, but it would be more financially beneficial (currently) to have 2 separate licences.   The block licence policy and fee information can be found at under the Block licence application drop down towards the bottom of the pages  
EPC questions  
  Please ask the Mees expert whether I am correct that there is no obligation for an EPC for an old-style “regulated tenancy” with the same tenant there for 40 years and likely to stay another 10 or more. i.e. no marketing, no change of occupant (and the tenant is responsible for all works). My understanding is no need.   Please email the team directly –
  Do you have any more information about the plan to move to EPC rating C or above? Very hard to get a Victorian property with solid walls up to C   Please email the MEES team directly –
General questions    
  If a property has a license and the tenant has complained about disrepair in the property and the council have got involved and are sending out letters etc to the landlord however, the tenant refuses to give access to the property to contractors and maintenance team – how should a landlord deal with this? The council have been informed of the situation however, are still citing terms of the license and taking action against the landlord despite the landlords efforts to do works. Please advise.   The landlord should carefully document when they have served notice on the tenants that they would like to enter and do repairs and again when the contractor has attempted to call and do the works. If the tenant keeps refusing entry the council may work with the tenant and landlord to allow entry, however this is not always possible. If its emergency works the council can do emergency remedial works and charge the landlord or prohibit the use of the property and again charge the landlord.   If its improvement works required a suspended improvement notice could be considered. Contact the officer and discuss the problems you’re having if you’re not happy with their reply’s ask to speak to their line manager.   It may be a breach of licence conditions and if this is the case the landlord should take action to remedy the situation and if the tenants are not co-operating the landlord may have no choice but to serve notice to leave. We do have a tenancy matter team that may be able to help the landlord to negotiate with the tenants and try to resolve any issues and sustain the tenancy to get the property improved.  
General questions    
  how do we work with the waste team to get contaminated bins emptied   Report it on the website, if you’re still having problems and the property is licenced contact the HMO or Selective team and we may be able to help get the matter resolved with the waste team. However please note the waste team will not empty the contaminated bin they will remove the whole bin. It’s the tenant’s responsibility to sort the waste and if the tenant is not doing this then it’s up to the landlords to either do it or pay to have it emptied via a private waste contractor and enforce the tenancy contract. Waste advisors can also be requested if you’re having problems to assist in education of the tenant, but ultimately it’s the licence holder’s responsibility to manage the waste from a licenced property, see the licence conditions.  
  Whilst landlords are being asked to comply with legislation in regard to things such as waste management, may I ask what is being done to require tenants to take action?  I own properties in Dunkirk, carry out an induction with my new tenants, provide full guidance…and yet every week after “bin day”…the streets are littered with bins.  The frame work for enforcement already exists…and yet nothing is done?  The same can be said for the general maintenance of property frontage/gardens….     We have stepped up our compliance framework to address some of these issues. We regularly have officers out inspecting externals on the streets now to identify and address these issues.   Let us know if you have a particular street or issue by reporting it online or to
  The councils focus is on Private Rental landlords however the council recently dictated how many lodgers I can have in my own home where I live (which happens to be in the Aditional Licensing area). Obviously I am going to keep my home in a good state of repair but what has it got to do with the council how I use my home? If it is a large property the only way of surviving is to have lodgers. If the council are to dictate how many lodgers I can have, then home owners are likely to move away from Nottingham and the city will loose some really good people. I find it discriminatory towards single people that the council can prevent me having people in my house, yet I could be a family with 10 people and be the worst eviromentally unfriendly family on earth and the council would do nothing!!   The number of lodgers is limited by legislation. The licensing teams will enforce the legislation.   Once you have three unrelated persons sharing amenities forming two or more households the property meets the definition in law of a shared house/hmo.   As long as the family of 10 are not problematic or reported as statuary overcrowded then it is unlikely the council would be aware of the number of occupiers.   We rely on intelligence to identify properties that are required to be licenced and undertake investigation when we become aware of properties that may meet the legal definition.  
  A major problem our tenants have is collection of bins. Their bins are not emptied we have tried talking to team who does it but didn’t work,   The bins have to be presented correctly and not contaminated. If the bins keep getting missed report them as missed bins. Tenants can report missed bins here.   If this continues to be a problem, you may need to contact your licensing team who may be able to look at the issues with you.