In Victoria, if you live in public housing, you will never pay more than 25 per cent of your income in rent.
This means, if the market rent of the property you live in is more than 25 per cent of your income, then your rent is reduced to be no more than that level. This is called ‘rebated rent’ or a ‘rental rebate.’
If the market rent is less than 25 per cent of your income, then you will pay market rent instead.
The Department writes to all people who live in public housing about their rent twice a year.
If you pay market rent, and the market rent of the property you live in has not changed, your rent will stay the same.
The Department reviews the market rent value of properties once a year, in August. If the market rent at your property has changed because of that annual review, they have to tell you in writing.
If you pay rebated rent, and your circumstances and income have not changed, your rent will stay the same.
The amount of payments from Centrelink, like the Age Pension, Parenting Payment, Carer Payment, the Disability Support Pension, Youth Allowance or Newstart, increases slightly twice each year.
This means that if you receive money from Centrelink, and you pay rebated rent, your rent will increase slightly.
Something is wrong
If you think there has been a mistake, and the amount of rent is too much or more than you think it should be, you can fill in a rental rebate form, called an ‘Application for rental rebate’.
Anybody living in public housing can fill in this form, and test the amount of rent that they pay at any time.
Once you fill in the form, and gather additional information, submit the form to your Housing Office. This allows the Department to check that they have all the correct information, and that they are calculating your rent correctly.
Housing should respond to you within 28 days.
More information about filling in the form, the form, and information about contacting your local office can be found on the housing website.
If you need help
You can call our free advice line on 1800 015 510 9am – 5pm, Monday – Friday, for help understanding your rent review letter, or for general issues.
You can also read more about the kind of assistance we can provide. If you’re unsure whether we can help – we always recommend giving us a call to see.
If you need help filling in an Application for rental rebate, your local Housing Office can assist, or you might like to read the Department’s Guide to completing the application for rental rebate.
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