Housing and independence

Housing options for people with disability

People with disability have many accommodation options. These include:

  • living at home with family or friends as support
  • host family support
  • share houses and boarding
  • public and community housing
  • group homes and cluster housing with 24-hour support
  • supported residential facilities

Living at home

If you live at home with your family you can get help through the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Support for carers is available for family members who take on a caring role.

The Independent Living Centre can provide advice on equipment and techniques to assist with everyday tasks.

Host families

Established schemes are available where professional carers are paid to provide support to people with disability who live with them.

Share houses and boarding

Some people with disability live with friends or others with similar needs, sharing costs, helping each other with tasks and providing mutual support.

Others may choose to pay an extra part of the rent or other money in return for help with some tasks


People who need minimal support can pay board to live in someone's home, with cooked meals, laundry and cleaning included.

People on low incomes who are renting or sharing accommodation can often receive financial assistance from Centrelink.

Public and community housing

Housing SA and community housing providers provide rental houses for people with disability or medical needs. Houses may include modifications such as accessible bathrooms and entrance ramps.

Public and community housing is for vulnerable, low-income households who can't access or maintain private rental accommodation.

Find out if you are eligible or register for public and community housing

If you already live in public housing and you need home modifications to help you continue to live independently, you can request home modifications from Housing SA or your community housing provider.

Group homes and cluster housing with 24-hour support

Group homes are where several unrelated people live in a home with support staff.

This style of accommodation is for people who need 24-hour support, including help with meals, personal hygiene, appointments and social activities.

Cluster housing is where there are a number of houses on one site with access to 24-hour support through an internal communication system.

The NDIS funds Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) payments to help with the higher cost of specialist disability housing when it is a reasonable and necessary support for a person due to extreme functional impairment or very high support needs. This is discussed when the person prepares their NDIS plan.

Supported residential facilities

Supported residential facilities (SRFs) are privately-operated group homes for people who need lower levels of assistance.

Services may include personal care, medication monitoring, meals, laundry and cleaning.

Fees are based on a person's income.

Eligibility for this accommodation takes into account general health, mental health, personal care needs and behavioural issues.

The Catalyst Foundation Seniors Information Service has more SRF information, advice and current vacancy listings.

The Community Visitor Scheme (CVS) aims to protect the rights of people with disability living in Supported Residential Facilities. Community Visitors visit and inspect facilities and provide advocacy and support to people living there.

Housing for young people with disability at risk of entering a nursing home

People under 50 years of age at risk of admission to a residential aged care facility may be eligible for additional support, rehabilitation, equipment, home modifications or other housing options.

The NDIS can fund home modifications to make a home accessible. The NDIS can also set up supports such as personal care to help with showering or dressing, or assistance with preparing meals and cleaning.

Aged care facilities

In some circumstances, residential aged care facilities may provide the type of service and support a person needs, particularly if there are no other alternatives close to family and friends.

Residential aged care facilities can offer support with meals, laundry, personal hygiene, nursing care and social activities.

Aged care and retirement housing information

Emergency housing

Emergency housing may be available if you are in a crisis situation.

Phone the Homelessness Gateway on 1800 003 308.

Related information

On this site

Other websites

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Page last updated 18 January 2019

Provided by:
Department of Human Services
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