NDIS Housing: Available Options and Application Process

June 5, 2024

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Moving out of home is a major milestone and an important life goal for many people. For people with disability, the challenges around finding suitable housing options can make this a difficult step to take.

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is designed to empower Australians living with disability by providing them the support they need to lead independent and fulfilling lives. 

One critical component of the NDIS is the provision of housing options that cater to participants’ needs. There are various housing options available under the NDIS.

Understanding NDIS Housing Options

The NDIS recognises that housing is important in promoting independence, social inclusion, and overall well-being for people with disability. The NDIS offers several housing options to address these needs, each tailored to meet specific circumstances and requirements.

1. Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA)

Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) is housing that has been specifically designed and built to cater to the needs of participants with significant and permanent functional impairments. SDA properties are constructed with specialised features, such as wheelchair accessibility, customised kitchen and bathroom installations, and assisted living technologies.

The NDIS typically funds these accommodations and may be provided through various models, including private rentals, public housing, or shared living arrangements. SDA properties are intended for NDIS participants who require a high level of support and assistance with daily living activities.

2. Supported Independent Living (SIL)

Supported Independent Living (SIL) is a service that supports NDIS participants living in their own homes or shared living with daily tasks and personal care. Depending on the participant’s needs, this support can range from drop-in visits to around-the-clock care.

SIL services promote independence and enable participants to live as independently as they choose within their communities. Each NDIS plan determines the level of support provided. It can include assistance with tasks such as meal preparation, personal care, household management, and social and community engagement.

3. Medium-Term Accommodation (MTA)

Medium-Term Accommodation (MTA) is a temporary housing solution offered by the NDIS for participants in transition or awaiting more permanent housing arrangements. It is typically provided for up to 90 days and can be extended if necessary.

MTA is particularly handy for participants moving out of hospitals or rehabilitation facilities, who require a transitional living arrangement, and who are looking for more long-term housing solutions.

4. Assistance with Daily Life (ADL)

Assistance with Daily Life (ADL) is an NDIS service that supports participants in managing their daily activities and maintaining their independence within their homes. This assistance can include personal care, household chores, meal preparation, and transportation.

ADL services are tailored to the individual needs of each participant. They can be provided on a short-term or ongoing basis, depending on the specific requirements outlined in their NDIS plan.

Other NDIS Housing Choices

Outside of these main housing options, participants may also choose to access mainstream housing with NDIS support. This can include:

  • Private Rental Market: With rental assistance and home modifications funded by NDIS, some participants choose to rent privately.
  • Public/Social Housing: State/territory housing authorities provide affordable rental housing, which the NDIS can supplement with care and equipment.
  • Home Ownership: NDIS funding can assist with the upfront and ongoing costs of purchasing and modifying a home.

Determining Eligibility for NDIS Housing Support

To access NDIS housing support, participants must meet certain eligibility criteria. The primary factors that determine eligibility include:

  • Age: The NDIS is available to Australian citizens and permanent residents aged between 7 and 65 years old at the time of applying for access to the scheme.
  • Disability: Applicants must have a permanent and significant disability that affects their ability to carry out everyday activities. The disability can be physical, intellectual, cognitive, neurological, sensory, or psychosocial.
  • Residency Requirements: Applicants must live in Australia and hold Australian citizenship, permanent residency, or a qualifying visa.
  • Support Needs: Applicants must have support needs that are directly related to their disability and are likely to continue for their lifetime. The NDIS assesses the required support level based on the individual’s functional impairment and circumstances.

It’s important to note that meeting the eligibility criteria does not automatically guarantee access to NDIS housing support. The level of support provided, including housing options, is determined through a comprehensive assessment process and the development of an individualised NDIS plan.

The right disability support worker can make a major difference in someone’s life. Our community access and self-care team at Interaction can work with you in a number of different ways, depending on your specific needs.

The NDIS Housing Application Process

During NDIS Housing Application Process

The application process for NDIS housing support involves several steps. Here’s a general overview of the process:

1. Submitting an Access Request

The first step is to submit an Access Request to the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), which administers the NDIS. You can contact the NDIA directly or through a partner organisation, such as a Local Area Coordinator (LAC) or Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) partner.

Supported Decision-Making

For participants with cognitive or psychosocial disabilities that impact decision-making, the NDIS promotes a “supported decision-making” framework. This involves:

  • Appointing a nominee to act on their behalf
  • Accessing specialised support coordination services
  • Engaging informal support networks like family/friends

The supported decision-making framework aims to uphold each participant’s autonomy while ensuring appropriate support.

2. Providing Evidence and Information

As part of the access request process, applicants must provide relevant documentation and information to support their claim. This may include medical reports, assessments from allied health professionals, and details about their disability and support needs.

Throughout the application process, it’s essential to provide accurate and detailed information about the applicant’s disability, support needs, and living situation. The NDIA relies on this information to make informed decisions and tailor the NDIS plan to the individual’s specific circumstances.

3. Meeting with an NDIS Representative

Once the Access Request is received, the NDIA will arrange for an NDIS representative to meet with the applicant (and their support network, if applicable) to discuss their situation, goals, and support needs. This meeting may involve additional assessments or observations to determine the appropriate level of support required.

4. Developing the NDIS Plan

Based on the information gathered, the NDIA will develop an individualised NDIS plan that outlines the reasonable and necessary supports the participant is eligible for, including housing options if applicable. The plan will also specify the funding allocated for these supports.

5. Implementing the NDIS Plan

Once the NDIS plan is approved, the participant can begin accessing the supports outlined in their plan, including housing options if applicable. This may involve working with service providers, locating suitable accommodations, and arranging necessary modifications or assistive technologies.

6. Plan Review and Reassessment

NDIS plans are typically reviewed and reassessed annually or when there is a significant change in the participant’s circumstances or support needs. During these reviews, the housing support provided may be adjusted or modified to ensure it continues to meet the participant’s evolving requirements.

If unhappy with an NDIS housing decision, participants can request an internal review by a different NDIA delegate or, if still dissatisfied, apply for an external review by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Factors Influencing NDIS Housing Support

While the NDIS aims to provide housing support to eligible participants, the level and type of support provided are determined by various factors. Some of the key considerations include:

  • Level of Functional Impairment: The severity and nature of the participant’s disability and their functional limitations play a significant role in determining the type of housing support required.
  • Support Needs: The NDIS considers the participant’s specific support needs, including personal care, mobility assistance, household management, and access to community and social activities.
  • Living Situation: The participant’s current living situation, such as whether they live alone, with family, or in a shared arrangement, is considered when assessing housing support needs.
  • Goals and Aspirations: The participant’s personal goals, preferences, and aspirations for independent living are considered when determining the most appropriate housing support option.
  • Availability and Suitability of Housing Options: The decision-making process considers the availability of suitable housing options in the participant’s desired location, as well as their accessibility and affordability.
  • Informal Support Networks: The level of informal support available to the participant from family, friends, or other caregivers is also considered when determining the appropriate level of NDIS housing support.

It’s important to note that the NDIS operates under the principles of reasonable and necessary support. This means that the level of housing support provided is based on the individual’s specific needs and circumstances rather than a one-size-fits-all approach.

Why Choose Interaction for Your NDIS Housing and Support Needs?

At Interaction, we understand that everyone has unique needs and goals for housing and disability support. This is why we take a personalised approach, working closely with you to develop a tailored support package that aligns with your NDIS plan.

Partnering with Interaction means open communication. We guide you through the NDIS process and provide detailed quotes before any service, making sure you know exactly how your NDIS funding is being used.

So whether you are looking for NDIS support coordination in Sydney, NDIS services in the Central Coast, or NDIS providers in Sydney, Interaction has you supported. 
Our extensive presence across the Sydney region ensures high-quality NDIS services wherever you are. Contact us today to see how we can help you achieve your goals.

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