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The Department of Communities and Justice (DCJ) is trying a new approach to letting public housing properties in Sydney.

This approach aims to give people applying for social housing more choice.

How will this new approach work?

People who are approved for priority housing and are highest up the list for the inner city and inner west allocation zones will be invited to view a vacant property.  It will be an open house viewing and other people on the list will be invited at the same time.

At the viewing or shortly following, people are required to advise if they wish to accept the property. If more than one person puts in a request, it will be allocated to the person who is highest up on the priority housing list.

How will I know which properties are available to be viewed?

The people who are highest on the priority housing list will get an SMS with an invitation to view the property, and details of the viewing time.  There will also be a link to a video of the property.

Invited persons will need to let DCJ know whether they’re interested in attending the open home viewing or not, by responding via the link in the SMS.

Where will the properties be located?

Properties included in the pilot will all be in the inner city allocation zone. They include 1 bedroom and 2 bedroom apartments in high-rise complexes in Redfern and Waterloo, and all studios within the inner city.

Who will be invited to view the properties?

People who are highest up on the priority housing list in the inner city and inner west  allocation zones will be invited to view the selected properties.

If I view a property or request a property at a viewing, will that count as one of my two offers of housing?

No.  You can view as many properties as you are invited to view.  If you request a property but are not successful because someone higher up on the list has requested the same property, that will still not count as a formal offer of a property. You are still eligible to receive two offers of a property in the normal way.

Invitations to view a property under the Choice Based lettings scheme are in addition to the normal offers you may receive.  But you may get housed more quickly if you view and request a property through this scheme before you receive a formal offer of housing for properties not included in the pilot.

What happens at the viewing?

A DCJ Housing Client Service Officer (CSO) will meet you at the property to show you around and answer any questions you may have. You may be asked to wait outside or in the foyer of the building while others are viewing the property, to maintain COVID-safety.

After you have looked around, the CSO will ask you if you are interested in the property. If you are interested in accepting the property, you will be provided with an expression of interest form to complete and return to the CSO.

If you are not interested in accepting the property, the CSO will ask you for feedback. If your circumstances have changed, you will be asked to complete a change of circumstances form to update your details. This will help us make sure you are made an appropriate offer in the future.

We will contact you to let you know if you are successful or unsuccessful as soon as possible.

Why will several people be invited to the same viewing?

We invite multiple people to the same viewing to ensure we are tenanting properties to people most in need as quickly as possible.

Will I be able to appeal against a decision not to accept my request for a property?

No. The person who is highest up the priority housing list will be allocated a property they request and that decision cannot be appealed. You will not be disadvantaged by this decision as you will still be eligible for two formal offers of housing, in addition to invitations to view other properties as part of the Choice Based letting scheme.

When will the pilot commence?

The pilot will commence after lockdown restrictions in Sydney are eased.

Fact Sheets

Inner City CBL Pilot - Factsheet for Tenants -  PDF, 167.91 KB

Inner City CBL Pilot - Factsheet for Clients -  PDF, 173.02 KB

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Last updated: 05 Aug 2021