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HMO licensing schemes in Islington

There are currently two licensing schemes operating in Islington.

Mandatory HMO licensing scheme

This scheme aims to ensure that larger, higher risk HMOs meet HMO standards and are adequately managed.

It applies to any rented property that is three or more storeys high - including a basement or mezzanine floor that is used for living/dining space, bedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms and toilets or where any storey which is used as a shop or in connection with a business premises - and is occupied by five or more people in more than one household that share basic amenities such as kitchen, bathroom or toilet.

For example, a building that compromises of a pub on the ground floor and a shared house on the first floor with a bathroom in the attic would count as three storeys.

A household may be a single person or several members of the same family, all related by blood or marriage. For example, a house occupied by a brother, sister and one other unrelated occupant would form two households; three unrelated persons would form three households.

Additional licensing scheme for Caledonian Road and Holloway Road

Additional licensing was introduced for both Holloway Road and Caledonian Road as there was evidence that majority of HMOs in these areas were poorly managed. 

A council survey (PDF) carried out along these roads revealed that 68% of the 200 properties surveyed had management concerns. Those management failings were linked to a number of health and safety hazards and antisocial behaviour affecting residents and local communities. 

Following consultation with residents and landlords, the council’s Executive introduced the additional scheme with the aim to: 

  • improve health, safety and well-being of tenants
  • create consistent standards for landlords and managing agents
  • improve identification of criminal landlords
  • increase numbers of accredited landlords

This additional licensing scheme applies to all rented properties on these two roads that are occupied by three or more people in more than one household, regardless of the number of storeys, that share basic amenities such as kitchen, bathroom or toilet.

A household may be a single person or several members of the same family, all related by blood or marriage. For example, a house occupied by a brother, sister and one other unrelated occupant would form two households; three unrelated persons would form three households. 

The scheme also applies to buildings that have been converted entirely to self-contained flats and the conversion works do not comply with the appropriate building standards (those applied in 1991 or later)*, and where less than two third of the flats are owner occupied.

*You may be asked to prove that your building does meet the above standards by providing certification as evidence.


  • HMO licence checker

    See if your property needs an HMO licence and apply for or renew an HMO licence online

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