There are a number of exemptions to property licensing set out in the Housing Act 2004 - the full list can be found on the UK Legislation website.

Exempt tenancies include:

  • a tenancy or licence of a house or a dwelling that is managed or controlled by:           
  • A tenancy granted by a registered social landlord eg Housing Association
  • Properties occupied by students where they are undertaking a fulltime course and where the property is managed by the educational establishment and in accordance with the approved code of practice e.g. registered Halls of Residence
  • Properties whose occupation is regulated by other acts e.g. Children’s Home, Bail Hostels
  • Properties let as holiday homes
  • Properties occupied by owners with up to 2 lodgers where living accommodation is shared. “Shared living accommodation” means a shared kitchen, bathroom facilities or living / dining room. Self-contained accommodation with a connecting door would not be “shared” accommodation unless the agreement permitted the lodger(s) rights to use the main house kitchen, bathroom or living / dining room at any time. Self-contained accommodation where there is a shared washing machine would not count as shared living accommodation.
  • Properties where rooms are rented by the freeholder or leaseholder to members of their family. A family member is defined in the Housing Act as having one of the following relationships to the leaseholder or freeholder:
    • Parent/Grandparent 
    • Child/Grandchild 
    • Brother/Sister 
    • Uncle/Aunt 
    • Nephew/Niece 
    • First Cousin

What is meant by holiday home?

A holiday home is not defined under the Housing Act 2004. Legal Services have interpreted a holiday let is a short let, where the duration of the stay is less than 90 days. Please note, there are also restrictions on planning use with holiday / short lets as well and you may be subject to additional council tax charges.

A property let under furnished holiday letting tax rules would be classed as a holiday home.

A property registered as a “short-let” business for business rates would be classed as a holiday home.

Please note, if on investigation it became apparent the occupant did in fact have an assured shorthold tenancy (other tenancy types may also apply) then a selective licence would be required and the person in control may be found liable for an offence for failing to licence. We advise owners to make sure they gain independent legal advice.

Contact the Property Licensing Team

Address: Property Licensing Team
Regulatory Services and Community Safety
Oxford City Council
Town Hall
St Aldate's

Telephone: 01865 252285

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