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Everyone living in public housing must pay a rental amount. It may be market rent or you may be eligible for a rental rebate which is an amount lower than your market rent and is based on your household income.

Market rent

The market rent of a property is what the property could rent for in the private market. The initial market rent of your property is outlined in your residential rental agreement.

The market rent value is reviewed once a year, in November. If your market rent amount changes because of the review, we will write to let you know.

How do you work out market rent?

An independent valuer works out the market rent value. It is based on the private rental market in the same area.

What is rental rebate?

All public housing renters in Victoria can apply for a rental subsidy called a rental rebate. The rental rebate is the difference between 25% of the total assessable income of all household members and the market rent of the property. You must be eligible and apply for a rental rebate.

If you are not eligible or you do not apply, you are charged market rent.

If you receive a rental rebate, you may have to pay an additional service charge where water, heating, laundry or other services are made available to you.

We review your rental rebate twice a year, every six months.

This may change your weekly payment  amount. If this happens we will send you a letter to let you know what your new rent is.

What is my weekly payment amount?

Your weekly payment amount depends on your household income.

If the market rent of the public housing property you live in is:

  • More than 25% of your household income: you will probably be eligible for a rental rebate.
  • Less than 25% of your household income: you will have to pay the market rent amount.

What does my household income include?

Your total household income includes the combined incomes of all household members 18 years of age or over.  When working out your rent, we take most of your income into account. Some income, such as payments made for specific purposes, will not be taken into account.

How do I apply for rental rebate?

Our forms and guides are available to download or access electronically.

To register for Centrelink’s Confirmation eServices please complete form. 

  1. Fill in the Application for rental rebate (.doc) or request an update through HousingVic Online Services.
  2. Attach all the documents we need and make sure that all renters complete the declaration.
  3. Give the application to your local office. Updates requested through HousingVic Online Services will be automatically submitted.

The guide to completing the application for rental rebate (.doc) has information to help you.

What happens next?

Once you have sent in your rental rebate form with all the documents needed, we will assess your eligibility based on the household income and assets information you provided.

We will write to you within 28 days to tell you if you are successful, your new weekly payment amount and when it starts. We will also tell you if your application then has you in rental credit or arrears.

Your housing services officer will write to you within 14 days if we need more information.

The guide to completing the application for rental rebate has information about when new weekly payments will start and certain circumstances when your rental rebate may be cancelled.

What happens if I'm not happy with the decision you made?

Discuss this with your local housing office. If you are still not happy, there is a process you can follow.

Go to Feedback, complaints and appeals for more information.