The Department of Communities offers bond assistance and two weeks' rent in advance as an interest-free loan to help people obtain accommodation in the private rental market. Maximum loan depends on your circumstances.
This loan scheme is extremely popular, with more than 10,000 loans approved each year.
You need to complete a Housing Options Assessment at any Housing Office when you want to apply for a bond, whether you are a new applicant, an existing client, or your circumstances have changed. The assessment will give you information about additional housing products and services you may be eligible for and you can lodge a bond application when the assessment is completed.
If approved for bond assistance or rent in advance, the Department will give you conditional approval and a form for your prospective landlord to sign. You must return this form to the Department who will then confirm this immediately with your landlord and arrange prompt payment.
Alternatively, if you have paid the bond or two weeks' rent in advance to the landlord or real estate agent, then the Department can refund this to you — but you must apply within eight weeks of payment of the bond or rent in advance and produce evidence of the payment to the landlord.
The loan is repaid in regular payments of at least $25 per fortnight.
Applicants must meet Bond Assistance Loan Scheme income limits; not have assets above $2,500 for singles without dependants, $5,000 for singles with dependants and $5,000 for couples with or without dependants; and should be 16 years or over.
Rent cannot be more than 60 per cent of an applicant's gross income.
If you have any queries, please contact your local Housing Office.