Selective Licence Application Guide

Video guide to making a Selective Licensing application

This guide gives you the information you need to make a selective licence application.

Background

Oxford City Council was given approval by the Government to implement a Selective Licensing scheme from 1 September 2022 which means that all privately rented properties must obtain a property licence. As the Council already operates an Additional HMO licensing scheme this means all rented property* across the whole city is included unless exempt.

The council aims to use private rented property licensing to ensure that all privately rented properties are in good condition and well managed. Many landlords do this already, however there are problems in many areas where a small minority of landlords neglect their management responsibilities. A number of well-intentioned landlords are not aware of their responsibilities and in some cases absentee landlords may not be aware of problems their tenants are causing. Arrangements must be in place for dealing with general tenancy issues and anti-social behaviour at the property. Properties must also be suitable for the number of occupants and meet all the relevant health and safety regulations. The council will be working with and exchanging information with other enforcement and regulatory authorities to administer and enforce licensing.

Licensing of private rented accommodation aims to ensure that:

  • Privately rented homes are not in poor condition
  • Adequate property and tenancy management arrangements are in place
  • Accommodation is suitable for the number of occupiers.
  • All landlords and managing agents operate at the same minimum level of professional standards.
  • Tenants’ health, safety and welfare are safeguarded
  • Landlords are ‘fit and proper persons’ or employ agents who are

There are three types of Property Licence which are in operation in the city. This guidance covers the selective licensing scheme.

Selective licensing of residential accommodation under Part 3 of the Housing Act 2004 is intended to respond to the problems of poor conditions within private rented across the city of Oxford. It applies to all private rented properties within the city that are not a House in Multiple Occupation. It is a tool to deliver sustainable improvements to private rented homes increasing the quality of existing stock in the private rented sector in terms of both physical conditions and management standards.

All landlords who rent out or let residential accommodation that is not a mandatory or additional HMO (House in multiple occupation) must have a selective licence.

If your property meets the criteria above, you must apply for a licence under part 3 of the Housing Act 2004.

Some examples of properties to have a selective licence:

  • A house rented to a family occupying the whole property
  • A house rented to one couple or two individuals
  • A purpose built flat rented to a family, one couple or two individuals
  • A flat in a building which has been converted to flats where the flat is rented to a family, one couple or two individuals providing the conversion to flats has been undertaken with Building Control completion.

*There are exemptions to the requirement to licence. Please read the following sections and then contact us if you believe you are exempt.


Exemptions from Licensing

There are exemptions in some cases from the requirement of licensing under part 3 of the Housing act.  The following list gives those exemptions:

  • The house is a House in Multiple Occupation (HMO).
  • A Temporary exemption notice is in force (s.62 or s.86 Housing Act 2004)
  • A management order is in force (s.102 or s.113 Housing Act 2004)
  • The tenancies or licences are granted by registered social landlords and housing providers.
  • The tenancies and licences are subject to a prohibition order whose operation has not been suspended. (s.20/s.21 Housing Act 2004)
  • The tenancy is a business tenancy
  • Certain premises licensed for alcohol consumption (only on-licences not off licences)
  • Certain agricultural tenancies
  • Buildings controlled or managed by a Local Housing Authority
  • Buildings controlled or managed by Police.
  • Buildings controlled or managed by fire brigade
  • Buildings controlled or managed by Health Service Body
  • Tenancies, licences etc regulated by other enactments
  • Certain University/College accommodation occupied by students
  • Where the owner or his relatives occupy a property on a long leasehold
  • Where landlord lets to certain relatives
  • Holiday Homes
  • Where landlord/licensor or his relative lives at the property and shares facilities

If you think that your property is exempt from the requirement of licensing, please contact us at propertylicensing@oxford.gov.uk.


What is a HMO?

A house in multiple occupation (HMO) is a property that is occupied by a 3 or more unrelated individuals/households who share facilities such as a kitchen or bathroom, or do not have exclusive occupation of the whole property.

For example, HMOs (Houses in Multiple Occupation) can commonly be occupied by a group of individuals sharing a house or flat, individuals living in bedsit accommodation, and some properties that have been converted into several flats.

Bed and breakfast and hostel accommodation occupied by individuals as their main and permanent address are also considered to be HMO.

There is more information on our Houses in Multiple Occupation pages.


What is a Household?

'Households' for the purposes of the Housing Act 2004 includes members of the same family living together who are:

  • couples married to each other or living together as husband and wife (or in an equivalent relationship in the case of persons of the same sex)
  • relatives living together, including parents, grandparents, children (and step-children), grandchildren, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces or cousins
  • Half-relatives who are treated as full relatives.
  • A foster child living with his foster parent is treated as living in the same household as his foster parent.

Fit and Proper Person

To obtain a private rented property licence, the applicant will need to demonstrate that they are a ‘fit and proper’ person. This will involve making a declaration to confirm their status with regards to criminal offences.


Who can apply for a property licence?

Anyone can apply for a property licence; however, they must be the most appropriate person to do so. Normally this will be the owner, or a manager employed by the owner. The proposed licence holder needs to be the most appropriate person, namely the landlord, person in receipt of rent or in control of the property. If it is a registered company or charity (or any other “person in law”), please give the full company name and address of a UK registered office.

Where the proposed licence holder lives overseas, the council will consider the application and the person must demonstrate satisfactory management arrangements. Where there is an agent with full management control, then we will ask both the agent and proposed licence holder to confirm agreements, and this can be uploaded with the application. If there is no agent, the licence holder must explain how they manage the property, and we would ask you to explain this in a word document which you upload with the application to avoid delays processing the application.

At the very least, the council expects the licence holder to have the power to:

  • let and terminate the tenancies;
  • access all parts of the premises to the same extent as the owner;
  • the ability to comply with all the conditions on the licence.

The council also requires details of all interested parties involved in the ownership or management of the property to be provided at the time of application. This includes the mortgage company. This requirement is stated in the Housing Act 2004, as we are required to serve copies of the licence on all persons with an estate or interest in the property.

The council aims to work with landlords to licence their properties within a timely manner. The applications will be processed in a “first come first served” Normally the licence will last for five years, however it will be granted for a shorter period in certain circumstances.

Please note that if the applicant is not going to be the licence holder, a second declaration form will be required to confirm that the license holder is aware of the application and consents to the applicant submitting the application. This will be emailed to the licence holder once the application has been submitted.

We will contact the person making the application in the first instance if we have questions.


Failure to apply for a licence

It is a criminal offence to let a property that is required to be licensed on a certain date by law without applying for a licence. There is a range of sanctions that could be applicable depending on the individual circumstances; these are detailed below:

  • Failure to apply for a licence can lead to prosecution or a financial penalty of up to £30,000
  • If the council cannot grant a licence or a licence is revoked, the council has the powers to make an Interim Management Order (IMO). This will transfer the management of the property to the council for a specified period after which a Final Management Order (FMO) may be made.
  • An unlicensed landlord is not able to use the section 21 Possession Procedure. The section 21 procedure entitles them to regain possession of the property without a court hearing, following the service of a valid notice giving the tenant at least 2 months notice.
  • For any period where an unlicensed property is being privately rented, an application can be made to the Residential Property Tribunal for a Rent Repayment Order. This could mean a landlord having to repay up to 12 months of rent.
  • In serious cases we will take landlords or agents to court and prosecute. If convicted, the offender will have a criminal record and must pay an unlimited fine for operating a house without a licence if it requires a licence. We may also seek a banning order which if awarded will prevent the landlord from letting or managing properties in England

Where the Council has had to take enforcement action, a licence may be revoked or varied and may require a new application for all licence types.


Licence Fees

Fees are charged for a property licence; the fees are only allowed to cover the cost of the Council administering and enforcing the licensing scheme.

The fees are paid in 2 stages, the first being paid at the time of the application and the second paid after the licence has been processed and the Notice of Intention (draft licence) is served.

The system will ask for pre-authorisation to pay the second stage. We set the maximum that may be charged at this point (£302). The early bird and accreditation discounts are dependent on criteria being met so we have to assess the application to decide if the early bird or accreditation fee can be given (for example, a landlord might not submit all the required documents).

For more information see our Selective Licensing fees and charges page.


Public Register of Licences

The Housing Act 2004 requires every local authority to maintain a public register of properties licensed under the act. Together with any Temporary Exemption Notices served or any Interim/Final Management Orders.

The register is updated as we continue to issue property licences. An electronic online register is available on our website to view.

The Housing Act 2004 requires this, and the name address of the licence holder and any manager are published. The Regulations pertaining to applications for licences requires the address of the licence holder and this means the place they are normally to be found – in the case of a person that means their home address or an organisation then their business address.


The application process - introduction

The Council has introduced an online application process for the selective licensing scheme, this system is not used for HMO applications by the Council. If your property is required to have a selective licence, you can complete your application online via the Council’s website. This guide has been written to assist you in completing the application.

This guide goes through all the questions which will need to be answered to make a valid property licence application. It goes through the process screen page by screen page.

Most applications will be for houses or flats. However, if you own a block of flats and all the flats within the block are rented and within the same common control (or if the owner lives in one flat and rents out all the others) then you can apply for a “block” licence to give one licence covering the whole building see our Selective Licensing block licence page for more details on this type of licence, including the fees. Before starting the form, please read this guide carefully, as instructions specifically relating to block licence applications are in grey “boxes”. Please email propertylicensing@oxford.gov.uk when you have submitted the form, with the application reference number(s) and we will contact you about further payment.

You will be able to navigate through the whole online application so you can review and edit any details before submitting your final application and payment.

If nothing seems to happen when the “continue” button is pressed, scroll to the top of the page as there may be some information that you have failed to fill in correctly. This will be displayed in a red box.

If at any point you wish to stop filling in the application form (even if just going away from your computer for a few minutes) please click the “save for later” button at the bottom of the screen. This will ensure you do not lose any information you have already entered, and you can log back into the same application by using the ‘Manage an existing application” option on the home screen.

The questions in the application form are either required by Regulations or to enable us to make a judgement about issue of a licence to the most appropriate person and other requirements in the Housing Act 2004.


How to apply for a Selective licence

Account creation

You will be required to create an account before starting your application. This account is separate to any other account you have with the Council and can only be used for Selective licence applications.

You can do this by clicking the “login” at the top of the page. This will then then bring up the section to create an account

Click the create an account button.

You will need to enter your first name, last name, and email address. Click continue.

You will be sent an email to register and to create a password.

Home screen

When making a new application you will need to click on “Apply for a new property licence”. If you have started an application but have not submitted it you can access it by clicking on “Manage an existing application” this will give you a list of the applications you have made which are either in progress or submitted.

To make a new application - click on the “Apply for a new property licence” this will take you through to a screen with details of what you should have available before you start your application.

Click “start now.” You will then be able to enter the postcode and click the address from the drop-down list and click continue. This list contains all residential addresses in the city. Flats, Annexes and named properties are listed at the end of the postcode dropdown list, and are not in numeric order - please search all the list to find your address. If your address is not listed, you will need to contact propertylicensing@oxford.gov.uk.

Indicate on this screen your role in the property (freeholder, leaseholder, agent or other). If you are an overseas landlords, select “other” to allow you to complete the application form using an UK address. Press continue.

On the next screen indicate if you are an organisation.

You are taken to the next screen to add your details. Please note, if you are an organisation / letting agency then take care to ensure you spell the organisation name the same way on every application. Click continue.

You will then need to add your address – add the postcode and select the address from the drop down list. If you are an overseas landlord making the application, then you need to use a UK address at which you can receive correspondence. Press continue.

The final screen in this section is to add your contact details. A phone number or email address is required, when completed click Finish - this will take you to the Task List for the application, you need to complete section 1 and 2 of the task list before you can submit and pay for your application. 


Section 1 - Add personal information

Recording Interested Parties

Click on “Interested parties”.

If you are an overseas landlord making the application then you need to add yourself to the application again - this time as Freeholder and using your overseas address. See the instructions on how to add   

If you are the only interested party in the property, click on “finish adding interested party”.

This will take you to the screen below where you must confirm the details before proceeding.

If there are no other interested parties, on the next screen you will be asked to confirm that you are proposed licence holder.

If there are other interested parties in the property click on “+ Add another interested party” button.

You will then need to enter the name and contact details. You will be required to add their address and email or phone number plus the date you informed them of the application. If the property is owned in joint names each owner must be added as a separate interested party. We would encourage you to secure an email address where possible (apart from mortgage company) to allow for documents to be sent via email which is quicker and greener. Please note that we must be able to reach all parties via email, therefore a unique email address is required for each interested party listed. You will not lose the whole application if you have to leave it to inform the interested party at this point, however the system will not keep the incomplete entry of the interested party until you click finish.

Click finish this will take you to a screen where you can review your answers. If any of the answers are incorrect you can amend them by clicking Change, if everything is correct click “save progress and return to the interested parties list.”

You will be asked to confirm that the property does not have the interested parties you have not added and then who is the proposed licence holder from the list of interested parties.

You will then be asked for the licence holder’s date of birth; this is not required if the licence holder is a limited company.

You will then need to confirm who the rent is passed onto - this is to determine who is the person in control and the person managing the property as defined in the Housing Act 2004.

If you are an agent and collect the rent, then select yourself as the person to whom rent is paid.

At this stage you will be taken to the task list and the interested parties will be completed, if at any stage before you submit the licence you realise that you have entered something incorrectly you can click on the section and change the details.

Fit and Proper test

It is a legal requirement to provide the Council with a list of other licensed properties which the proposed licence holder is the licence holder, whether in the area of the local housing authority to which the application is made or in the area of any other local housing authority. Do this by emailing the list to propertylicensing@oxford.gov.uk.

There are 9 questions in this section which you must read and answer yes or no, you may be asked for further information which you must supply. The questions are to assist the Council in determining if the proposed management structures and funding arrangements are suitable and whether the person proposed to be involved in the management of the house has a sufficient level of competence to be involved.

You do not need to ask any of the associated persons with the application form these questions, you only need to declare these if you already know of any.

  1. Have you, or anyone associated to you, or mentioned on this form, have unspent convictions relating to any of the following?
  • Fraud
  • Dishonesty
  • Violence
  • Drugs
  • Sexual Offences Act 2003 (Schedule 2)

If yes: Specify the offence details and who this relates to.

  1. Have you, or anyone associated to you, or mentioned on this form, been found by a court or tribunal to have been involved with any unlawful discrimination on grounds of Sex; Colour; Race; Disability; Ethnic or National Origins?

If yes: Specify the offence details and who this relates to.

  1. Have you, or anyone associated to you, or mentioned on this form, had a judgement made against you or them by a court or tribunal relating to Housing, Public Health, Environmental Health or Landlord and Tenant Law?

If yes: Specify the offence details and who this relates to.

  1. Does the proposed licence holder or manager have experience of managing rented property?
  2. Is the proposed licence holder an accredited landlord?

This question only applies to the licence holder’s accreditation. If yes, the licence holder is accredited, provide the name of the association or regulated body and the accreditation certificate number. If the managing agent is the accredited party, then we will match this up as part of the application checks. Accredited agents are listed on our website.

  1. Is the property visited to check its condition and for any antisocial activities of the tenants?
  2. Are there funds to deal with uninsured damage/insurance and maintenance to the property?

If no, provide details of funding arrangements for dealing with emergency repairs, uninsured damage, necessary maintenance, or general upkeep of the property.

  1. Have you or anyone associated with you within the last 5 years, been in control of a property that was subject to a Management Order? (these are served under the Housing Act 2004)

If yes, specify who.

  1. Have you or anyone associated with you within the last 5 years, been in control of a property that has been refused a licence or breached conditions of a licence?

If yes, specify who.

Once you have completed this section you will be able to check and change any of your answers at this point click “save and return to task list” to continue with the application.


Section 2 – Prepare Application

Enter details of the property to be licensed 

YOU must click on selective licence as the Council is NOT using this system to process HMO licences.

You need to state how many people currently live in the property

This includes any children and partners of tenants etc.

You need to state how many households currently live in the property

'Households' for the purposes of the Housing Act 2004 includes members of the same family living together who are:

  • couples married to each other or living together as husband and wife (or in an equivalent relationship in the case of persons of the same sex)
  • relatives living together, including parents, grandparents, children (and stepchildren), grandchildren, brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, nephews, nieces or cousins
  • half-relatives who are treated as full relatives.
  • A foster child living with his foster parent is treated as living in the same household as his foster parent.

2 persons sharing a property who are not related are considered a single household.

For the question “how is a property used” then either select house rented to a single household or flat rented to a single household, even if it is two individuals which is two households.

If you select flat rented to a single household you will be asked to state what type of flat:

  • House converted into and comprising only of self-contained flats
  • Purpose built block of flats
  • Other

You then need to say how many storeys are in the building, the property and where they are situated.

Important note on block licence applications

Property address – ensure you use the address for the whole building

Property details section

  • “How is the property used” - select “Flat rented to a single household” to allow for the form to be completed.
  • You will then be asked to explain type of building this is (select from)
    • House converted into and comprising only of self-contained flats
    • Purpose built block of flats
    • Other
  • How many storeys (floors) does the building have? For a Block Licence, this MUST be ALL the floors in the building.
  •  How many storeys (floors) does the property have? For a Block Licence, this MUST be ALL the floors in the building.
  • On what storeys (floors) are they situated (i.e. the floors in the property)  For a Block Licence, this MUST be ALL the floors in the building.
  • How many separate lettings are there? For a block licence, you need to select one otherwise the application form will think you are trying to make an HMO licence
  • How many habitable rooms are there? (Habitable room is any room in a property apart from a kitchen or bathroom). This is for the entire building, not habitable rooms per flat.

Counting the number of storeys in the building 

When counting the number of storeys in the building you need to include: 

  • basements and used attics / loft conversions (you do not need to list an attic / loft that is accessed via a ladder and not habitable accommodation).
  • any storeys which are occupied by you and your family if you are a resident landlord
  • all the storeys that are being used for  residential occupation, even if they are self-contained
  • any business premises or storage space on any of the floors .

Counting the number of storeys in the property?

If the property you are licensing is within a building i.e. it is a self-contained flat or a maisonette the number of storeys will be restricted to those within the property. For example, if there is a block of flats and your flat is on the 2nd floor and only has one floor then the number of storeys in the property is 1.

On what storeys are they situated?

You will need to type inside the text box what floor(s) your property is on. For instance, “Ground Floor, First Floor.”

How many separate lettings are there?

This is the number of separate tenancies in the property that is to be licensed. In most cases in selective licensing this will be 1, however there maybe times it could be 2.

How many habitable rooms are there?

This means rooms that are, or could be, used for sleeping accommodation. Not bathrooms, kitchens, undersized rooms.

What is the approximate year the property was originally constructed?

This is an approximate year, select the option for your property.

Are there any external structures, outbuildings or sheds used as part of the living accommodation?

This means structures, outbuildings or sheds that are used for living purposes (e.g., office, gym, bedroom etc). It does not include a shed used only for storage of belongings e.g., bikes / lawnmower.

Once the section is completed you can check the answers before continuing with the application.

Describe the rooms of the property to be licensed

These questions relate to ALL the rooms in the property – it may be helpful if you have a floor plan of the property with room sizes at this stage, this can be uploaded onto the system. You will need the room sizes in square metres (m2).

Room size (m2) = Length (metres) x width (metres).

Click on add a room and on the next screen click on “Start now.”

Select the room type:

  • Bedroom
  • Living room / communal space
  • Kitchen / open plan kitchen (this includes open plan kitchen / living / dining rooms)
  • Bathroom / shower room / separate toilet

Click the room type you are adding and then click “Add a room”.

You need to state the location of the room. Detail the location where in the property the room is located as if you were standing outside the front door looking at the property. For instance, ground floor rear right room or First Floor Front Left Room.

Add the size of the room (approximate) (numbers only e.g., 5 for 5m2).

You need to say if the room is “shared” or “exclusive”. You will always answer exclusive. The system will default to Shared but in a selective licence in most cases the room will be exclusive. Exclusive use is where facilities are in sole use by 1 household.

If the room you are adding is a bedroom you will be asked further questions:

  • Does the bedroom have bathroom facilities (e.g., an ensuite). If the answer to this is yes i.e., the bedroom has an ensuite bathroom you will be asked to enter the number of each facility present in the bathroom 

Important note on block licence applications

Rather than adding each individual room in the building, you can use the “Bedroom” option to add each flat. Do not add any of the other room type options. As you complete this section, it will ask you to describe the room, for Block Licences this will mean the flat.

  • Where is the flat: This should be completed as, for example, “Flat 1 – Ground Floor, front”
  • Size of the entire flat in m2

     

     

     

    • Is it shared or exclusive - always select Exclusive for Block Licences
    • Does the bedroom have bathroom facilities (Y/N)
      • Select yes and then add the number of wash basins, toilets & bath / shower
    • Does the bedroom have kitchen facilities (Y/N)
      • Select yes and the number of ovens / hobs / sinks / fridges / freezers

     To finish the section, you will need to mark that the property does not have the following: (these are only used when submitting applications for individual flats)

    • Living room / Communal space
    • Kitchen / Open plan kitchen

Bathroom / Shower room / Separate toilet

  • Does the bedroom have kitchen facilities. If you answer yes to this you will be asked the following:
    • How many ovens in the room
    • How many hobs in the room
    • How many sinks in the room
    • How many fridges in the room
    • How many freezers in the room

Click finish and you will have the opportunity to review the entry, to add further rooms press “save progress and return to rooms list.”

If you choose Living room/Communal space you will be asked the same initial 3 questions followed by

Does the living room / communal space have a smoke alarm? Answer yes or no.

What of the following three categories best describes the living room / communal space. Select from dining room or living room or other

Communal areas in a single-family house include living and dining rooms.

If you choose Kitchen/ open plan kitchen area you will be asked the same initial 3 questions followed by:

Does the kitchen have a heat detector. Answer yes or no.

Facilities in the kitchen:

  • How many ovens in the room
  • How many hobs in the room
  • How many sinks in the room
  • How many fridges in the room
  • How many freezers in the room

Type the actual number of each of the facilities above into the corresponding box. If there is no freezer enter 0

If the property is provided unfurnished and tenants provide the kitchen facilities, you will need to know what facilities are in the kitchen. This can be done by asking the tenants or visiting the property.

If you choose bathroom/shower/toilet you will be asked the same initial two questions followed by:

  • How many wash hand basins in the room
  • How many toilets in the room
  • How many baths / showers in the room

Enter the actual number of each of the facilities above into the corresponding box.

When you have finished adding all the rooms in the property click “Finish” and then click “finish adding rooms” on the “Rooms in Property” screen.

Health and Safety  

These questions relate to the fire precautions and other safety measures in the property.

Q1. Does the property have fire doors to the kitchen. Answer yes or no.

A fire door is one where its construction and installation provide at least a 30minute barrier to fire. If you are unsure, then select no.

Fire doors are not a legal requirement for Selective Licensing however may be needed depending on risk assessment.

Q2. Does the property have fire blankets in all kitchens? Answer yes or no.

Fire Blankets are not a legal requirement for Selective Licensing. Fire Blankets should be compliant with British Standard BS EN 1869:1997. They should be located in the kitchen in a position away from the cooker or source of flame.

Q3. Does the property have fire extinguishers in the stairways. Answer yes, no, or not applicable (i.e. if a flat).

Fire extinguishers are not a legal requirement in properties which need a selective licence but if provided in the property they should be compliant with British Standard BS EN3 and be maintained in accordance with British Standard BS5306-3, which requires a basic annual service. Also, they should be located in a position not to obstruct the mean of escape.

Q4: Does the property have a mains powered fire detection system. Answer yes or no. If you select no, you need to state how many battery-operated smoke alarms are present in common parts.

A fire detection system is any form of system that alerts occupants to fire. A mains powered fire detection system is where the alarms are powered by the main electrical supply. For instance, if you have interlinked smoke/heat detectors or a system which links smoke/heat detectors and call points to a control panel then this is a “mains powered fire alarm system.” If you select no, then you will be asked how many battery alarms there are.

It is not a legal requirement to have a main powered alarm for Selective Licensing however if the property only has battery alarms, then this will prioritise the property for inspection. The lack of mains powered alarms may lead to a Category One hazard and you might be asked to install mains powered alarms to improve the safety of the property for the tenants.

The common parts means the stairwells, hallways and landings of all property types

Q5: Do you provide details of escape routes and other fire safety information to occupiers? Answer yes or no.

This could be in written form with the tenancy agreement or a sign behind the bedroom door. A landlord should carry out a fire risk assessment on their property. See Fire safety law pages on GOV.UK for more information

Q6. Does the furniture you provide within the property comply with the Fire Safety Regulations. Answer yes, no, or not applicable.

Note – it is the furniture you supply. If unfurnished, select not applicable,

These regulations set levels of fire resistance for domestic upholstered furniture, furnishings and other products containing upholstery. You will normally know if a piece of furniture complies by looking at its label. If there is any doubt on compliance you should remove and properly dispose of the item.

Q7: Is there gas in the property? Select yes or no. If you select yes, you will have to confirm that all gas appliances are safe. If you have gas appliances, you should have them checked every 12 months by a qualified ‘Gas Safe’ qualified gas engineer. They will give a Gas Safety certificate. This should be retained as we may request a copy be sent to us in the future.

Upload documents and certificates

The system will allow you to upload documents with your application. If you do not have certification, or you do not wish to supply the documents, you can confirm this. However, you will not be eligible for any discount on your licence fee if the correct and current certificates are not provided at the time of the application.

Double check all the information and documents attached before submitting the application. If any documents are missing/ out of date / marked as unsatisfactory or belong to a different property, the licence will not be eligible for a discount.  Discounted Licence fees have been set to reflect that a valid and complete application, with the correct documentation attached will be received. We will not chase or send reminders to those submitting applications with incorrect documentation and you will be charged the full licence fee for such licence applications.

There is a button “+ Add a document”. Click this to upload. You will then need to select the type of document:

  • Electrical safety certificate
  • Gas safety certificate
  • EPC
  • Accreditation certificate
  • Other

Click the “+ add a document” button to upload. You will then have a “choose file” button and this will allow you to choose the file from your directory and click upload file. The system will show the message “file uploaded successfully”.

You must provide a PDF of the EPC. If you are accessing the property EPC from the Find an energy performance certificate section on the GOV.UK website, you can print to a PDF - this can be done by clicking the print icon when the certificate is displayed under 'Share this certificate'. The PDF will be stored on your computer and you will be able to upload the certificate from there.

If an EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) is not provided you will have to provide either

  • a copy of an entry onto the exemption register from the EPC requirement Search for exemptions - PRS exemptions register or
  • a copy of the tenancy agreement, if the EPC has expired and the tenancy has not changed, under the “other” category

This will allow us to process the application without any need to contact you.

Overseas licence holders – use the “other” button to upload your explanation for management arrangements. Where there is an agreement with an agent, you can download an Overseas Landlord Declaration template to complete and upload. If you do not have an agent, upload a word document explaining how the property is managed. Failure to provide this will delay processing the application.

If the EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) has expired and the tenancy has not changed, then please provide a copy of the tenancy agreement under the “other” category. This will allow us to process the application without any need to contact you.

The provision of floor plans for a block licence can be uploaded in the category of “other”. For all other properties, floor plans are not a requirement however you can upload if you wish, using the “other” category.

Repeat for more documents.

If you have no further documents to upload click “finish adding documents.” If you do not wish to provide the documents, or you do not have the documents for the property, interpret this as “you do not wish to upload the certification at this time.” You will have to confirm you do not wish to upload these documents.


Section 3 - Apply

Read and sign declaration

Tick the boxes to indicate you have read and understood the declaration.

Submit and Pay

Payments can be made using a credit or debit card on the METASTREET system for individual licence applications and multiple applications (up to 8 in one payment). We recommend this as it will make the application process easier as all transactions can be processed through the system.

If you have more than 8 properties, then you must complete applications in batches / sets of 8 to reduce the number of credit card transactions (you can pay per application if you wish)

e.g. landlord owns 14 properties – you need to complete 8 applications and then stop and pay for these 8, you then complete the next 6 and pay for these.

Important note about pre-authorisation

The payment is split in two stages. Stage one (£178) is paid with the application. Stage two is paid when the draft licence is issued. Any discounts are dependent on the application form being checked and all documents provided. The system will ask you to pre-authorise the maximum stage two fee of £302.

How to pay for a single application

When you have completed all sections of the licence application, there will be a link to “submit and pay”. If the sections are not marked as “completed” then you will not be able to pay. 

Click on the Submit and Pay button on the task list – this will open the screen that will allow you to make a card payment by completing the card details.

The system will take your stage 1 payment at this point, and you can authorise the stage 2 payment to be made when the notice of intention to grant the licence is issued. The pre-authorisation is for the standard fee (the maximum amount) and when the application is assessed, we will then reduce the amount taken if applicable.

When you have paid, you will receive two emails – one to confirm the application has been submitted and the second to confirm payment amount. 

How to pay for Multiple Licences (up to 8 licence payments at a time)

If you are applying for more than one licence then do not enter your credit card details – click the link create an application for another property, you will then be able to pay for all the applications in one transaction however this is limited to 8 applications by the payment platform. When you are ready to pay for multiple applications, you are given the option either on the Submit and pay screen by clicking “pay for multiple licence applications “this page will display all the licences that need to be paid from your list. Complete the card details and make the payment, you will receive 2 emails detailing the licences paid for in the transaction.

If you need to make more than 8 applications, then we suggest you:

  1. Fill out 8 application forms, save and then pay for 8
  2. Repeat as necessary by filling out 8 applications and making payments. Repeat until all applications made.

How to pay for a block licence

Pay as above for a single or multiple application, using the stripe system for up to 8 applications.  This will allow the application to be submitted. Please email propertylicensing@oxford.gov.uk with the subject title Block Licence and in the email give the licence reference number(s). We will then contact you for the remaining stage one payments. 

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