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You may be eligible for help if you are a young person who is homeless or at risk of homelessness in one of these areas:

  • Newcastle
  • Tamworth and Armidale
  • Central Coast
  • Queanbeyan and Goulburn
  • Wagga Wagga and Albury
  • Orange, Bathurst, and Dubbo
  • South Eastern Sydney
  • South West Sydney
  • Penrith and Mount Druitt/Blacktown
  • Western Sydney
  • Lismore

Do you need help finding and paying for a place to live?

The NSW Government has a program called Rent Choice Youth. The program helps young people aged 16 to 24 years to:

  • find a place to live (in a private rental unit, flat or home)
  • get approved for a lease
  • pay the rent for up to 3 years
  • stay in a current rental if it’s affordable and help is needed to pay the rent

You will also be linked with a support worker who will help you make and work towards study or job goals. This will eventually help you to afford the rent on your own.

Who can get Rent Choice Youth?

You can apply if you:

  • are aged 16 to 24 years old,
  • don’t have your own place to live (you might be sleeping on a couch at a friend’s place, in a shelter or boarding house or at risk of homelessness),
  • are an Australian Citizen or Australian permanent resident, and
  • are motivated to work or complete study or training to help obtain a job, and
  • are willing to engage with a support provider, who will help you engage in training, education and employment
  • are on a low income or studying.

Speak to a member of the team in your local public housing office to find out more about weekly income limits.

How does it work?

For the first 12 months, you pay 25% of your weekly income plus 100% of any Commonwealth Rent Assistance you may be entitled to get. Once you have paid your part of the rent, we pay the rest directly to the landlord or real estate agent. The amount you pay will go up gradually after 12 months, but we’ll chat to you about that closer to the time.

How you pay your rent can include wages, government allowances, benefits and child support payments. Your income can increase and you can still continue to receive Rent Choice Youth.

Affordability

Rent Choice Youth can only be paid if the rent is affordable. When considering what’s affordable for you, take into account your weekly income plus 100% of any Commonwealth Rent Assistance you may be eligible for.

What other housing support can I receive?

FACS provides a range of private rental supports that can help you find and secure a new home. You may also be able to get help with costs to set up your new home, or to pay for education, training or work related needs while receiving Rent Choice Youth.

What is Commonwealth Rent Assistance and how do I receive it?

Commonwealth Rent Assistance is a weekly payment given to suitable people who rent in the private or community housing market. The Department of Social Services has further information on Commonwealth Rent Assistance and how to apply.

How do I find out more?

If you would like to apply for Rent Choice Youth, or just want to know more, call your local public housing office or the Housing Contact Centre.

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