This policy sets out how Housing SA:

  • manages registrations of interest in public housing, Aboriginal housing and housing managed by Housing SA in Aboriginal communities
  • makes offers of housing to registrants
  • allocates properties to registrants

Customers who are eligible in line with the Eligibility for housing policy can register their interest in public and Aboriginal housing, and housing managed by Housing SA in Aboriginal communities. The registrations are placed on a register. The person who registers their interest is called the registrant.

The register includes registrations for other housing programs, for example the Pathways Housing Program, and Housing SA tenants registered for transfers.

Housing SA won’t accept a registration of interest from someone who’s excluded from Housing SA services in line with the Antisocial behaviour policy.

Registration of interest categories

Registrations for public and Aboriginal housing are prioritised and placed in a category based on the registrant’s need for housing and the urgency of their situation.

Housing SA considers all the below when assessing a registrant’s need for housing:

  • their accommodation history
  • the housing options available to them
  • their individual need
  • the circumstances of anyone else included on their registration of interest

Registrations for housing in an Aboriginal community aren’t placed in a category. Housing SA assesses the needs of the registrant and other household members to determine their support and housing requirements.

Housing SA tenants who register for a transfer may be approved for Category 1 or 2 in line with the Transfer policy.

Category 1

Category 1 is for registrants with urgent housing needs and long-term barriers to accessing or maintaining private housing options.

Registrants are approved for Category 1 if Housing SA assesses that they meet all the below conditions:

  • they’re homeless and at risk
  • their accommodation history and the housing options available to them indicate private housing is unsuitable in the long-term

Category 2

Category 2 is for registrants who aren’t in urgent housing need but have long-term barriers to accessing or maintaining private housing options.

Registrants are approved for Category 2 if Housing SA assesses their accommodation history and housing options to indicate private housing is unsuitable in the long-term.

Registrants are eligible for Category 2 without an assessment if they can verify they, their partner, or a child in their or their partner’s legal custody or guardianship either:

  • receive the Disability Support Pension from Centrelink, including if they received it immediately before moving on to an Aged Pension, or they currently don’t receive it because of WorkCover payments
  • receive the Totally and Permanently Incapacitated Pension from the Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • are a refugee living in Australia for less than 2 years, verified by either the Department of Home Affairs documentation, visa codes 200, 201, 202, 203, 204 or 866, or a letter from the Australian Refugee Association

Category 3

Category 3 is for registrants who don’t have urgent housing needs or long-term barriers to other housing options.

Registrants are registered for Category 3 if they’re eligible for public or Aboriginal housing but haven’t been approved for Category 1 or 2.

Category 4

Current Housing SA tenants who register for a transfer are registered for Category 4 if they haven’t been approved for Category 1 or 2 in line with the Transfer policy.

Low demand housing

Low demand housing is any property that can’t be allocated to registrants in other categories because of a lack of demand.

Registrants can register for low demand housing if they don’t meet the income and asset limits but meet all other eligibility criteria and haven’t been approved for Category 1 or 2.

Ordering of registrations of interest

Registrations of interest are placed on the register based on either:

  • the date they were approved for Category 1 or 2
  • the date they registered their interest
  • a benefit date approved by Housing SA, for example a customer who was removed from someone else’s registration may be given a benefit to reflect the time already spent on the register

Reviewing registrations of interest

Category 1 reviews

Category 1 registrations are reviewed 12 months from the date the registrant was approved for Category 1. The purpose of the review is to make sure the registrant’s still eligible for Category 1.

Housing SA contacts registrants before the review date asking them to contact Housing SA to make an appointment if they still have urgent housing needs.

If the registrant doesn’t respond, Housing SA moves their registration from Category 1 to Category 3 or 4 and defers it for 12 months.

Registrants can ask to be re-assessed for Category 1 at any time if they have urgent housing needs.

Category 2, 3 or 4 review

Housing SA contacts registrants in Category 2, 3, 4 or low demand every 12 months to make sure they still have a need for housing and their information’s correct and up to date.

If registrants don’t respond, Housing SA defers their registration for 12 months.

Moving registrations between categories

Housing SA may move a registration between categories in any of the below situations:

  • the registrant’s circumstances change
  • as a result of reviewing the registration of interest
  • the registrant doesn’t respond to contact from Housing SA, for example to review their registration of interest

Updating registrations of interest

Registrants must tell Housing SA if there are changes to their household or circumstances that could affect their eligibility for public housing or Housing SA’s ability to contact them. This includes, but isn’t limited to, when:

  • their contact details change
  • they change their name
  • the members of their household change

Registrants may tell Housing SA if they want to change their registration including, but not limited to, when:

  • someone moves in or out of their household
  • they want to change the areas they registered for
  • they want to cancel their registration

If a person is removed from someone else's registration, for example due to a relationship breakdown, they can make their own independent registration of interest.

Active, deferred and cancelled registrations of interest

A registration of interest is active until either:

  • the registrant accepts an offer of housing
  • the registration of interest is deferred or cancelled

A registration of interest can be deferred by either:

  • the registrant, for example they ask to defer it because they’re temporarily unable to accept housing
  • Housing SA, for example if the registrant can’t be contacted

A registration of interest is cancelled either:

  • if it’s been deferred for 12 months
  • if the registrant is registered for public or Aboriginal housing and hasn’t lived in South Australia for at least 1 year
  • at the registrant’s request
  • if the registrant’s excluded from Housing SA services in line with the Antisocial behaviour policy

Making an offer of housing

Before making an offer of housing, Housing SA confirms all the below conditions:

  • the registrant’s still eligible for housing and the category their registration of interest is in
  • the property the registrant may be offered is appropriate for their household and circumstances
  • an intervention order won’t be breached if the registrant moves into the property they may be offered
  • the registrant’s previous lease agreement wasn’t ended by Housing SA within the last 6 months for reasons other than antisocial behaviour, for example debt
  • the community’s local governing body has been consulted, if it’s housing managed by Housing SA in an Aboriginal community

Areas, house types and sizes

Registrants are offered a property that meets their household’s requirements, for example it has enough bedrooms for the number of people in their household.

Registrants are offered housing within an area rather than a specific suburb or town, except in any of the below situations:

  • they registered their interest on or before 25 February 1998 and the registration is in Category 3
  • they’re Housing SA tenants who were housed on or before 25 February 1998, and have a registration for a transfer in Category 4

Housing SA only offers specific types of housing, for example a town house, cottage flat, if the registrant still wants to be offered a specific house type and either of the below conditions are met:

  • they registered their interest on or before 25 February 1998 and the registration is in Category 3
  • they were housed on or before 25 February 1998, they’ve since registered their interest in a transfer and the registration is in Category 4

Housing SA uses the Occupancy standards in public housing to determine what size of property would be appropriate for the registrant’s household.

Housing SA may make an offer of housing that doesn’t match the registrant’s household size if both the below conditions are met:

  • they have a specific, verified need for a particular house size, for example they need an extra room for medical equipment
  • the supply or demand for housing stock permits it

Allocating a property

Once a registrant accepts an offer of housing, they’re allocated to the property.

Housing SA talks to the registrant about:

  • the conditions of their lease agreement, also known as the Conditions of Tenancy or Tenancy Agreement
  • how rent’s calculated and charged
  • any support needs they may have
  • any other program requirements relating to the offer

Housing SA offers registrants:

Rent is calculated in line with the Rent policy.

Before moving in, the registrant:

  • provides proof of income and identity for themselves and everyone in their household aged 16 and over with an independent income
  • makes an arrangement to repay any outstanding debt they owe to Housing SA in line with the Account management policy, if applicable
  • arranges to pay rent and other charges through the Rent Deduction Scheme if their main income is from Centrelink or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs
  • pays a bond, also known as a deposit, equal to 1 week’s rent if they’re moving into public or Aboriginal housing
  • pays rent in advance for the first week based on rent for the number of days between the date they’re allocated and the following Saturday

Related information

Supporting guidelines

  • Managing the housing register guideline v1
  • Allocations guideline v4

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.