Guidance for Houses _ Flats in M

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					                                    LONDON BOROUGH OF HACKNEY

                                     PRIVATE SECTOR HOUSING UNIT

           GUIDANCE FOR HOUSES AND FLATS IN MULTIPLE OCCUPATION

                                 Housing Act 2004
                The Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple
          Occupation and Other Houses (Miscellaneous Provisions) (England)
                                 Regulations 2006
                 The Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation
                            (England) Regulations 2006


BEDSIT ACCOMMODATION

Bedsits
Premises occupied in rooms, as bedsits, flatlets, on a floor by floor basis, or any
combination of these arrangements. Tenants will have a room or number of rooms for their
exclusive occupation. Generally, there will be some sharing of amenities such as a
bathroom and/or toilet. In this type of accommodation each occupancy would be separately
rented.

Background
The following is a mix of regulations from the Housing Act 2004 (which came into force in
2006) and the good practice guidance from British Standards, the London Fire and
Emergency Planning Authority, the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health and similar
organisations. Where it is not laid down by law, each case must be dealt with on its merits
and a „Risk Assessment‟ under the terms of Part 1 (The Housing Health and Safety Rating
System) of the Act may need to be carried out.

MANAGEMENT REQUIREMENTS

The Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation and other Houses
(Miscellaneous Provisions) (England) Regulations 2006 and The Management of Houses in
Multiple Occupation (England) Regulations 2006 apply to the premises and detail full
responsibilities of managers and occupants and are part of these Standards.

The person managing the premises must make their name, address and telephone
number(s) available to each household within the House in Multiple Occupation (HMO) by
clearly displaying these details in a prominent position in the HMO.

The person managing the premises is responsible for the following:-

-         Repair, decoration and cleaning of rooms and areas in common use such as
          bathrooms, toilets, staircases, landings and halls.

-         Repair, maintenance and cleaning of all facilities in common use such as baths,
          hand basins and toilets.


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-         Repair and maintenance of lettings and facilities within the lettings.




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-         Repair and maintenance of the supply of gas, electricity and water and the lighting,
          heating and drainage installations.

-         Maintaining the means of escape in case of fire.

-         Provision of a dustbin. (Normally one British Standard dustbin per letting, sited in a
          suitable position outside the premises).

STANDARDS FOR ROOMS USED AS SLEEPING ACCOMMODATION

A room should not be occupied by more than two people and a child under five years old,
unless they have a second child while living at the same address. However, a landlord
should not let a room to two people with a child over five years old.

Irrespective of the floor area, consideration should be given to the shape and usable living
space within the room to determine whether it is suitable for occupation and to what level of
occupancy.

The standard is to be applied irrespective of the age of the occupants.

Sharing of rooms should be avoided unless the individuals concerned consent to share the
room.

Separate kitchens and bathrooms are deemed unsuitable for sleeping accommodation.

Cooking facilities should be provided within each letting where practical.

Cooking facilities provided within the room

If occupied by one person - not less than 11.1 sq.m. (120 sq. ft.)

If occupied by two people - not less than 13.9 sq.m. (150 sq. ft.)

Cooking facilities provided in a separate room/kitchen

If occupied by one person - not less than 8.4 sq.m. (90 sq. ft.)

If occupied by two people - not less than 11.1 sq.m. (120 sq. ft.)

Where provided, separate cooking facilities will have a minimum size of not less than 5.5
sq.m. (60 sq. ft.)

THE HOUSING HEALTH AND SAFETY RATING SYSTEM

The HMO must not have any Category 1 Hazards and Category 2 Hazards should be
reduced as much as possible.

Further information on the various hazards introduced by the Housing Act 2004 can be
found in the “Housing Health and Safety Rating System” guide. For copies, please see the
contact details at the end of this guidance.




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OTHER STANDARDS

Natural and artificial lighting

All habitable rooms should have an adequate level of natural lighting.

All habitable rooms should be provided with a glazed window. The glazed area to be
equivalent to at least 1/10th of the floor area. Adequate electric lighting is also to be
provided.

All staircases, landings, passages, bathrooms and toilets are to be provided, where
practical, with a window.

Windows to bathrooms and toilets (including any glazing to doors) are to be glazed with
obscured glass.

Adequate artificial electric lighting should be provided for all staircases, landings, passages,
bathrooms and toilets. This lighting is to be provided, maintained and paid for by the
landlord or their agent. Artificial lighting to staircases, landings and passages should be
controlled from a sufficient number of appropriately placed switches. If a time switch
system is used, the time period should be reasonable and appropriate to the circumstances
of the occupants.

Ventilation

All habitable rooms should have external window ventilation to the external air and, which
                                   th
opens to an equivalent area of 1/20 of the floor area.

All bathrooms, shower rooms, toilets and kitchens should ideally have external window
ventilation and, which opens to an equivalent area of at least 1/20th of the floor area of the
room.

In addition all habitable rooms, kitchens, bathrooms and toilets should be provided with a
permanent means of ventilation by means of an air brick, or, if not practical, a mechanical
supply.

In bathrooms/shower rooms, toilets and kitchens where an external window is not present or
practical, mechanical ventilation should be installed and ducted to external air, it shall
provide a minimum of three air changes per hour, operating from the lighting circuit of the
room and fitted with a 20-minute overrun.

Installation for heating

The premises should have adequate provision for heating.

All habitable rooms and baths or shower rooms should be provided with a permanent and
properly installed heating appliance. This appliance must be capable of efficiently keeping
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the room at a minimum temperature of 16 C when the outside temperature is -1 C.




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Water Supply

Each letting should be provided with a supply of cold running water which complies with
statutory standards and is suitable for drinking. This supply is to be sited over a sink. The
water supply should also be protected as necessary from frost damage.

Stop valves should be provided for each floor or each separate letting in a conveniently
accessible position.

Facilities for the storage, preparation and cooking of food

Each letting should, where practical, be provided with its own cooking facilities for the
exclusive use of the occupants. These facilities should be provided separately in a properly
designed and constructed kitchen on the same floor as the letting or within the room of
occupation. Shared kitchens will be considered if practicalities do not allow exclusive use of
facilities.

If it is not practical to provide one set of cooking facilities for each unit of accommodation,
then a risk assessment will be carried out in accordance with Part 1 of the Housing Act
2004 (Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS)). However, the maximum
number of persons for each set of cooking facilities is five.

A set of cooking facilities should include:

-         A cooker with four burners, oven and grill. (Or, in single room lettings a cooker with
          a minimum of two burners, oven and grill).

-         A stainless steel sink and drainer combined (minimum size 1000mm x 600mm) set
          on a 1000mm x 600mm base unit. The sink is to be provided with a constant supply
          of hot and cold water and properly connected to the drainage system. A tiled
          splashback (minimum 450mm high) should also be provided to the sink/drainer and
          worktop.

-         A storage cupboard, minimum capacity 0.42 cubic metres. This is in addition to any
          base unit cupboards provided below the sink/drainer 15 cubic ft.

-         A refrigerator, minimum capacity 0.14 cubic metres 5 cubic ft.

-         Two double 13 amp electric sockets situated approximately 150mm above the
          worktop and a double 13 amp electric socket at low level for the refrigerator and
          other appliances as necessary. These are in addition to electric sockets provided
          elsewhere in the letting.

-         A worktop constructed of suitable materials (non absorbent and stain resistant i.e.
          impervious), minimum size 1000mm x 600mm. If portable cooking appliances are
          provided in single person lettings, these appliances should be situated on a suitable
          fixed worktop; this worktop is in addition to the one provided for food preparation
          purposes.

-         A suitable floor covering that can be easily washed or cleaned (i.e. impervious).




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Toilets

One toilet should be provided for every four people irrespective of age.

Where there are five or more people sharing the facilities there must be:-

1.        one separate toilet with hand basin which has a tiled splashback for every five
          people sharing; and

2.        at least one bathroom (which contains a toilet) with a bath or shower for every five
          people sharing.

Where there are 10 or more people sharing, the third toilet must be in a separate
compartment to the third bathroom/shower room.

Toilets must be situated within one floor of the letting. Separate toilets should be a
minimum of 1300 x 800mm.

Shared amenities are to be accessible from a common area.

Wherever practical each separate letting should be provided with a toilet for the sole use of
the occupants.

Personal Washing Facilities

Where there are five or more occupiers of an HMO, each separate letting should have a
hand basin (minimum dimensions 500mm x 400mm), with a tiled splashback (minimum
300mm high), together with constant supplies of hot and cold running water.

However, if there is a sink already in the letting which can be used for food preparation/
cooking/storage, a separate basin is not required.

The provision of a basin in each letting is preferred.

One bath (minimum dimensions 1700mm x 700mm) or one shower (minimum dimensions
800mm x 800mm) should be provided for every five people irrespective of age. These
facilities should be provided in a properly constructed bathroom or shower room, situated
within one floor of the letting. Not less than half of these facilities should be baths, and
every resident in the house or flat should have access to a bath.

Each bath should be situated in a separate bathroom of an adequate size and layout. Each
shower should be situated in a suitable shower room (minimum dimensions 1600mm x
900mm).

Each bath and shower should be provided with a constant, freely available supply of hot and
cold water.

A tiled splashback (minimum 300mm high), should be provided to all baths. Shower
cubicles should have fully tiled walls. Showers should be provided with a suitable water
resistant shower curtain or door to the cubicle.

Each separate toilet and bathroom should be provided with a hand basin (minimum
dimensions 500mm x 400mm), together with constant supplies of hot and cold running
water.
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Where space within existing toilets is limited, the hand basin may be a minimum of 365mm
x 265mm. Each hand basin should have a tiled splashback (minimum 300mm high).

Each bath/shower room must be adequately heated and ventilated.

Shared amenities are to be accessible from a common area. Wherever practical each
separate letting should be provided with a bath/shower for the sole use of the occupants.

Laundry Facilities

To be provided, if practical, for 20 or more people.

Means of Escape in Case of Fire

The premises should be provided with an adequate means of fire safety and must ensure
that any fire-fighting equipment and fire alarms are maintained in good working order.

In order to provide an adequate means of fire safety to eliminate a Category 1 Hazard in this
type of HMO, the following would normally be required as recommended by the London Fire
Safety Guidance for Houses in Multiple Occupation issued by the London Fire and
Emergency Planning Authority and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health
published in May 2006.

One and Two Storey Premises (excluding basement)

1.        Half hour fire-resistant (to British Standard 476) door separation (to include self
          closer, intumescent strip and cold smoke seal, door stops etc). One hour fire
          resistant door separation will be required to any higher risk rooms.

2.        One half hour basement separation.

3.        Half hour separation between lettings and between lettings and protected route
          extended to one hour for any higher risk rooms or areas.

4.        Mains linked single point fire detection system to British Standard 5839 Part 6:2004
          Grade C/D Category LD2 dependent on the outcome of a Housing Health and
          Safety Risk Assessment being carried out.

5.        Handheld fire fighting appliances (1 x 9 litre water extinguisher and 1 x 2kg dry
          powder or 2.2kg carbon dioxide extinguisher on each level).

6.        One fire blanket to be provided at each set of cooking facilities and sited remote of
          the cooking appliance...

Three and Four Storey Premises (excluding basement)

1.        Half hour fire-resistant door separation (to British Standard 476)) (to include self
          closer, intumescent strip and cold smoke seal, door stops etc). One hour fire
          resistant door separation will be required to any higher risk rooms.

2.        Half hour basement separation. The staircase to any basement should be lobbied
          wherever practical.
3.        Half hour separation between lettings and between lettings and protected route
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          extended to one hour for any higher risk rooms or areas.

4.        Handheld fire fighting appliances (1 x 9 litre water extinguisher and 1 x 2kg dry
          powder or 2.2kg carbon dioxide extinguisher on each level).

5.        One fire blanket to be provided at each set of cooking facilities and sited remote of
          the cooking appliances.

6.        An automatic fire detection system primarily designed to BS:5839 Part 1:2002 to a
          Grade A LD2 Category coverage with the exception of the clauses relating to alarm
          audibility, warnings for the hearing impaired, manual call points, capacity of standby
          batteries and radio linked systems – these are replaced by the relevant clauses in
          BS:5839 Part 6.

           Control Panel to BSEN 54-2 (power supply to BSEN 54-4)

7.        Emergency lighting in escape route to British Standard 5266: Part 1:1988.

Five and Six Storey Premises (excluding basement)

Either:-

(a)       Single half hour fire door separation, secondary means of escape and automatic fire
          detection; or

(b)       Double half hour fire door separation e.g. lobby, an upwards escape route and
          automatic fire detection; or

(c)       Double half hour fire door separation e.g. lobby, automatic fire detection and sixth
          floor closed where a secondary escape route cannot be provided.

          Note: One hour fire door separation will be necessary to any higher risk room or
                area.

          and

1.        Half hour basement separation. The staircase to any basement should be lobbied
          wherever practical extended to one hour for any higher risk area.

2.        Half hour separation between lettings and between lettings and protected route
          extended to one hour for any higher risk rooms.

3.        Handheld fire fighting appliances (1 x 9 litre water extinguisher and 1 x 2kg dry
          powder or 2.2kg carbon dioxide extinguisher on each level).

4.        One fire blanket to be provided at each set of cooking facilities.

5.        An automatic fire detection system primarily designed to BS:5839 Part 1:2002 to a
          Grade A LD2 Category coverage with the exception of the clauses relating to alarm
          audibility, warnings for the hearing impaired, manual call points, capacity of standby
          batteries and radio linked systems – these are replaced by the relevant clauses in
          BS:5839 Part 6.

           Control Panel to BSEN 54-2 (power supply to BSEN 54-4)
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6.        Emergency lighting in escape route(s) to BS:5266 Part 1:1988

GENERAL FOR ALL HOUSES IN MULTIPLE OCCUPATION

1.        Fire Instructional Notices

          (a) A Notice stating “FIRE DOOR KEEP SHUT” shall be displayed on all fire doors
              bar those to bedrooms.

          (b) A Fire Instructional Notice informing residents what to do in the event of fire shall
              be prominently displayed within the ground floor hallway or adjacent to each
              break glass call point should the requirement be that they are installed.

Further Information

1.        D.O.E. Design Bulletin 24 - "Spaces in the Home". HMSO 1972.

2.        The latest edition of the Building Regulations.

For information regarding these regulations or a copy of the Housing Health and Safety
Rating System guide, please contact:-

          London Borough of Hackney
          Private Sector Housing Unit
          Stoke Newington Municipal Offices
          Stoke Newington Church Street
          London N16 0JR

          Tel. No. 020 8356 4866




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