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Houses in multiple occupation (HMO)

HMO fire safety

Fire detection and fire safety requirements

We assess HMOs to make sure appropriate fire safety and detection systems are in place. The Regulatory Reform Act (Fire Safety) Order 2005 means that the landlord, or responsible person in charge of a HMO, must take reasonable steps to reduce fire risk and make sure people can escape if there is a fire.

For HMOs with one or two floors

The fire detection system must meet BS5838 Part 6 LD2 Type D1 (tamper proof battery back-up) or D2 (replaceable battery back-up). The system must include:

  • mains operated interlinked smoke detectors in the entrance, hallway, living areas and landing areas
  • an interlinked fixed temperature heat detector in the kitchen
  • sound, close-fitting traditional construction doors or fire doors fitted on all doors that open onto the main route of escape. Not hollow panel doors
  • a fire blanket compliant to BS EN:1869 in the kitchen
  • mortice rim locks or ‘quick release latches’ fitted to the entrance door, and any other door opening on to the main route of escape. Key operated locks are not acceptable

For HMOs with three or more floors

Larger HMOs will need extra fire safety and detection measures, such as fire doors. Some HMOs may need emergency lighting depending on the level of natural and artificial light.

Fire risk assessments

The landlord or responsible person in charge of any size HMO must provide a written fire risk assessment. They must update this assessment regularly.