The introduction of the Community Housing Rent Policy for Indigenous Councils changes the way that rent is calculated for social housing owned by Aboriginal Shire Councils, the Northern Peninsula Area Regional Council and the Torres Strait Island Regional Council in Queensland.
Under the policy, rents are assessed at rates of up to 25% of combined assessable household income, but not exceeding the maximum rent that has been set for each dwelling.
Some types of income are assessed at a lower rate, such as Family Tax Benefit A which is assessed at 15% and the income of household members under 25 which is assessed at 10%. Some income is not assessed at all, such as certain allowances and benefits.
The rent calculation takes into account the total amount of assessable household income, which means everyone earning an income in each household contributes to the rent. However, no household will pay more than the maximum rent set for their dwelling, regardless of the combined income of the household.
The maximum rent is based on an analysis of social housing rents in country Queensland, taking into account the number of bedrooms in each dwelling and the services and infrastructure available in the community.
The rent policy is part of the one social housing system, and ensures remote Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities can access a similar standard of social housing as other Queenslanders.
A number of fact sheets have been prepared explaining the way rents will be calculated.