Rent Assistance (RA) is an additional payment made to individuals who are paying rent and who are also in receipt of a Social Security income support payment, or the Family Tax Benefit (Part A) above the base level.
The amount of RA you are eligible to receive will depend on a number of questions.
- Are you single or a member of a couple?
- Do you have children?
- Do you share the property that you are renting?
- How much rent are you paying?
- Are you paying board and lodgings?
If you are paying government rent in ‘public housing’ to either state or territory governments you are, unfortunately, not generally eligible for RA.
For those of you whose home is a boat, motorhome or caravan, mobile home, or a unit in a retirement village; the weekly fees (including site and maintenance fees) that you pay could also mean that you may be entitled to RA.
RA is paid at the rate of 75 cents for each dollar of rent above the minimum rent amount – up to the maximum rate depending on your family situation.
For example, a single person paying rent of $250 per fortnight would be eligible for a RA payment of $100.50 per fortnight. To be entitled to the maximum RA payment of $130.40 per fortnight then someone would need to be paying rent of (at least) $289.87 per fortnight.
If you are a member of a couple, or have children, the calculation will be slightly different. This also applies to those people who are sharing, paying board and/or lodgings.
If you do happen to be travelling overseas then RA can be paid for a period of 26 weeks (depending on the regulations associated with the portability of the income support payment you may be receiving). You should also note that RA can be affected by the income and
Like all government payments; the rules and regulations on which a person’s eligibility are based upon are complicated, and not always easy to follow.
But if you think you do have an entitlement to RA, and you are currently not receiving this payment, please contact your financial adviser to test your eligibility. It is worth doing so – the extra income could certainly make your life that little bit easier!
MARK TEALE | CENTREPOINT ALLIANCE
PREPARE FOR LIFE | ISSUE 22 | JULY 2016
The information provided in this page is general in nature and does not constitute personal financial advice. The information has been prepared without taking into account your personal objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on any information you should consider the appropriateness of the information with regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs. You should seek independent advice from your financial adviser before making any decisions.
AUSTRALIAN MORTGAGE AND FINANCIAL ADVISERS (AMAFA)
Phone: 07 3378 2056
Fax: 07 3378 2069