Housing and independence

Housing options for people with disability

There are many options for housing if you have a disability. You may live in your own home (with or without care), share with others or board.

Rental houses, supported housing or larger supported facilities can provide specialised housing if you are unable to live in your own or a family home.

Demand for accommodation for people with disability is high, so access to accommodation support from the government is determined through a priority system based on need.

Private homes

Sharing with others

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

Sometimes people with disability live with friends, housemates or relatives and pay rental costs or other reimbursements in exchange for assistance with some tasks.


Some people who require minimal support may pay board to live in someone's home in return for cooked meals, washing and cleaning.

Host family arrangements

There are some established schemes coordinated by disability services where selected professional carers are paid to provide support to people with disability who live with them.

Rental housing and specially adapted homes

Housing SA and community housing providers can provide specialised rental houses for people with a disability or medical needs. They generally do not provide any personal support but help with housing and maintenance issues.

Houses may include modifications such as:

  • an accessible bathroom and toilet
  • ramped entrances
  • widened doors and hallways
  • lowered kitchen benches.

A guardianship order, administered by the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (SACAT), can help people to manage their personal finances and may be essential for successful independent living in some situations.

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

Group homes and cluster housing

Group homes are where four or five people live in a home with support staff.

This style of accommodation is for people who require access to 24-hour support, help with meals, personal hygiene and social activities.

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

Support staff can help provide assistance with shopping, appointments or recreational pursuits when needed.

Applying for group homes or cluster housing

You must be currently eligible and actively registered with Disability SA to apply for group homes or cluster housing. Priority is given to people in most urgent need.

Contact the Disability Information Service on 1300 786 117 or email disabilityinfo@sa.gov.au for more information.

Supported residential facilities

Supported residential facilities (SRFs) are privately-operated group homes for people who need lower levels of assistance, including people with disability, mental illness and older people.

Services vary between SRFs but may include personal care, medication monitoring, meals, laundry and cleaning. Fees are calculated based on a person's income.

A state government subsidy is paid to proprietors on behalf of eligible residents. An assessment to determine eligibility considers such factors as medical and general health, mental health, personal care needs and behavioural issues.

This assessment is done before someone moves into an SRF.  Existing residents can also be assessed for additional support and services.

Phone the SRF Intake and Support team on 8448 4600 to discuss assessments.

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

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

If you are under 50 years of age and at risk of admission to a residential aged care facility, you may be eligible for other housing options.

For help and support to move into more age-appropriate disability supported accommodation, contact the Disability Information Service on 1300 786 117 or the Disability Intake and Assessment Team on 8348 6500.

Aged care facilities

In some circumstances, residential aged care facilities may provide the type of service and support you are looking for, particularly if there are no other alternatives close to your 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 web page provides more information about the options available.

Emergency housing

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

Related information

On this site


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Page last updated 30 April 2018

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Department of Human Services
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