Houseboats and other ships

Image of houseboats

​The requirements applicable to your houseboat depend on how it is used. It can be used either for private habitation or for commercial purposes. Many of the regulations applicable to private habitation and commercial purposes are the same. But if the houseboat is used for commercial purposes, a number of additional regulations must be met. Commercial purposes include, for example, museums, restaurants, hotels or discotheques.

The Danish Maritime Authority is responsible for the approval and inspection of the houseboat's stability, hull design, various tanks and removal of the houseboat. The approval and inspection work is performed by individuals/companies authorised by the Danish Maritime Authority.

​Find the list of authorised persons and companies here

The authorised individual or company can often assist with questions beyond the area of authorisation.

What is a houseboat?

Houseboats are floating units that are permanently moored either in or outside a port and that are used for private habitation or for commercial purposes. In order to be referred to as a houseboat, the use must be of a permanent nature.

Register your houseboat

Houseboats must be registered. You apply for registration with the Register of Shipping.

See how to register your houseboat here.

Some houseboats are required to be surveyed and certified

According to the MARPOL Convention, houseboats must be surveyed and certified when:  

  • they ​have a gross tonnage of or above 400

  • if more than 15 persons are living on board.

We cannot grant exemptions from the certification requirement. One of the recognised classification societies performs the survey and the certification.

Find the list of recognised classification societies here.

Normally, houseboats with a gross tonnage of or above 1000 are always required to hold a bunkers certificate.

Special requirements may apply to foreign houseboats.​


Ship Survey, Certification and Manning
Peter Frey, Senior Ship Surveyor
+45 72 19 63 36