Public and Aboriginal housing is for people on low incomes, particularly those who have difficulty accessing and maintaining housing in the private market. Demand for public housing exceeds the number of properties available.

Housing managed by Housing SA in remote and non-remote Aboriginal communities is for people who have a direct cultural or family connection to the Aboriginal community they register for.

This policy sets out who is eligible for:

  • public and Aboriginal housing
  • housing managed by Housing SA in Aboriginal communities

People may choose to also register their interest in community housing if they’re eligible in line with the Community Housing eligibility policy (PDF, 131.4 KB).

The person who registers their interest is called the registrant.

Eligibility

Public and Aboriginal housing

People are eligible for public housing if they meet all the below conditions:

People who don’t meet the income and asset limits may still be eligible to register their interest if they meet all other conditions and they are eligible for Category 1 or 2.

People who are eligible for public housing can also register their interest in Aboriginal housing if they can verify that they’re of Aboriginal and/ or Torres Strait Islander descent.

Housing in an Aboriginal community

People are eligible for housing managed by Housing SA in an Aboriginal community if they meet both the below conditions:

  • they have an independent income
  • the community’s local governing body confirms they’re connected to the community they’re registering for

Housing SA consults with the Aboriginal community’s local governing body when a registration is received to:

  • confirm the registrant’s connection to the community
  • take local considerations into account, for example family groups, locations they can and can’t live in
  • take the community’s needs into account

Residential property

What’s considered to be an interest in residential property is set out in the Property ownership policy.

People who aren’t eligible for public or Aboriginal housing because they or a member of their household have an interest in residential property may still be able to register if any of the following exceptional circumstances apply.

Relationship breakdown

People may be able to register if their relationship has broken down and they meet both the below conditions:

  • their former partner still lives in the property they jointly own
  • they’re eligible for Category 1

Household need

People may be eligible to register if they’re approved for Category 1 and the equity in their property isn’t enough to buy or rent another home that meets all the below conditions:

  • it’s in the area they need to move to
  • it’s large enough for the household
  • it’s affordable

The property should be listed for sale before the registrant is allocated to a public or Aboriginal housing property.

Temporary need

People may be eligible to register if they or someone in the household needs to move away from home temporarily but wants to eventually move back, for example for medical treatment.

They will only be offered housing on a short-term lease.

Domestic abuse

People may be eligible to register if they meet all the below conditions:

  • they need to leave the property they jointly own because of domestic abuse
  • their former partner still lives in the property
  • disposing their interest in the property is delayed

Debt and bankruptcy

People who meet the eligibility criteria but have an outstanding debt to Housing SA can register but won’t be offered public housing, Aboriginal housing, or housing managed by Housing SA in an Aboriginal community, until they have an active arrangement to repay the debt in line with the Account management policy.

People who are bankrupt with an outstanding debt to Housing SA can register but won’t be offered housing unless either:

  • the bankruptcy is discharged
  • they’re approved for Category 1
  • they’re registered for housing in an Aboriginal community

Previous tenants and other occupants

Previous public or Aboriginal housing tenants who had a lease agreement ended by Housing SA for reasons other than antisocial behaviour can register but can’t be housed for 6 months from the date their lease agreement ended. Housing SA can choose to waive this if there are exceptional circumstances.

Previous tenants and other occupants of public, Aboriginal housing or housing in Aboriginal communities may be excluded from registering or being re-housed in public and Aboriginal housing for 12 months in line with the Antisocial behaviour policy.

Previous tenants of housing in an Aboriginal community who had a lease agreement ended by Housing SA will only be re-housed in an Aboriginal community in consultation with the community’s local governing body.

Current tenants and other occupants

Current tenants aren’t eligible to register except if they’re housed on a short-term lease, for example through the Short Term Housing Program, Homelessness Supportive Housing Program.

Current tenants may be eligible to register:

Partners of current tenants aren’t eligible to register while they’re living with the tenant, except if either:

  • they need to leave because of domestic abuse, verified in line with the Domestic abuse policy
  • they want to leave because the relationship has broken down

Other occupants, including the tenant’s children, can register at any time provided they’re eligible.

Related information

Controlling documents

This policy is based on and complies with:

Supporting guidelines

  • Eligibility for housing guideline v1
  • Assessing housing needs guideline v1

Related policies and other documents

Date this policy applies from

14 April 2020

Version number

1

The online version of the policy is the approved and current version. There is no guarantee that any printed copies are current.