Social Housing is the broad term that includes Public Housing, Affordable Housing, Community Housing, Crisis and Transitional Housing. Social Housing is a major provider of accommodation for those who have a disability in Australia, with forty percent or 159,000 households tenanted by people with disability. Public and Community housing providers have long wait lists of up to 7 years, although depending on your situation and disability you may be able to go onto a priority list. Applications for Social Housing can be placed through the Victorian Housing Register.
It’s important to have good advocacy when making an application for Social Housing, and to understand how to apply for priority access if you have special needs or circumstances. Your LAC or Support Coordinator will be able to help you with this. For more info, check this link
The impact the NDIS has on social housing will be profound. With portable supports coming from personal NDIS packages, more people will be looking to move into Social Housing and to bring along their own supports. As Group Homes will no longer be an option for 94% of people on the NDIS, the demand for social housing from those with a disability will increase.
In Victoria, as of 2022, there are 116,351 people living in Social Housing across 64,428 dwellings and there are 119,000 people on wait lists for Social Housing. There are on average 2 people per dwelling.
People who live in Social Housing typically pay what is called a “Reasonable Rent Contribution (RRC)”. For those on a disability pension, this usually means paying 25% of your pension in rent costs, plus all of your Commonwealth Rent Assistance. The rest of your pension needs to cover costs of food, utilities, medication and entertainment etc.