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Information on houses in multiple occupation (HMOs) and on the condition of residential properties assessed by local authorities under the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) for April 2020 to March 2021.

The onset of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in March 2020 and the subsequent public health measures introduced by the UK and Welsh Governments had a substantial impact on local authorities’ ability to undertake HHSRS inspections during 2020-21. Specifically, notably fewer inspections were undertaken in 2020-21 and, where available, resources were focussed on premises at higher risk.

Main points


  • During 2020-21, local authorities carried out 1,873 assessments under the HHSRS, just a third of the number carried out in 2018-19.
  • During 2020-21, Category 1 hazards were found in 845 (45%) of all assessments made.
  • The most common Category 1 hazard found in both HMOs and non-HMOs was ‘Excess Cold’.
  • Action by local authorities during 2020-21, resulted in 567 Category 1 hazards being resolved, of which 56 (10%) were in HMOs.


  • At 31 March 2021, there were 7,229 licensed HMOs; of these, 34% (2,443) were classified as mandatory licenses and 66% (4,786) as ‘additional licensing’ schemes. 


Housing hazards and licences: April 2020 to March 2021 , file type: PDF, file size: 931 KB

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Craig Mcleod

Telephone: 0300 061 5675

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Telephone: 0300 025 8099

Rydym yn croesawu galwadau yn Gymraeg / We welcome calls in Welsh.