The NDIS aims to give people choice and control over their life – including where they live. If you or a loved one want to move out of aged care and into more suitable accommodation, the NDIS can support you with that goal.
Beginning your journey
The first step to moving into more age-appropriate accommodation is to get it included as a goal in your NDIS plan. If you don’t have a plan review coming up soon, you can contact the NDIS and request a change of circumstances review.
When you meet with the LAC or Planner, tell them you want to move out of residential aged care. You may be asked the reason why, but because the NDIS and government have pledged to support this cause, it’s very unlikely you’ll have to justify your request. Simply saying you’re unhappy living there, or that it’s impacting your ability to participate in community activities will likely be enough.
At this stage, you don’t have to know where you want to move to – just wanting to leave residential aged care is enough to get funding in your plan to help you explore more appropriate housing options.
Exploring your accommodation options
The NDIS understands this transition is a major life change that you can’t make in a hurry. Your new plan will include funding to help you explore the accommodation options available to you, so you can find accommodation you’re happy with.
A big part of this funding will be in the form of support coordination. Your support coordinator is a professional who understands the NDIS and will work closely with you to understand your options and find a provider that will be suited to your support needs and lifestyle.
Most people who are exploring their housing options receive funding for about 100 hours of support coordination, which gives you an idea of how involved the process is. But the good news is, at the end of it you can be confident you’re moving to a place where you will feel happy, supported, and able to achieve all your other NDIS goals.
NDIS housing options
There are 4 main types of accommodation available with the support of the NDIS. Each one offers something unique, so the best option for you will depend on how much support you require, the ways your informal support network can assist with your day-to-day life, your NDIS goals, and more.
Supported Independent Living (SIL) funds around the clock support delivered in a group home. SIL allows you to live with people of a similar age to you with similar hobbies and interests, resulting in a fun, supportive and communal environment.
Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) is designed for people with very high and complex support needs (only 6% of NDIS participants qualify). This funding covers the construction and modification of a house or apartment that’s built specifically for you and your needs. You’ll still have to cover the rent with your own money or through another support program, such as the disability support pension. Once you’re in your custom-built home, you can choose how you want to manage your supports (although most SDA residents pair it with SIL, due to their high support needs).
Independent Living Options (ILO) funds a support worker who comes into your home and assist with day-to-day tasks. ILO doesn’t fund the actual accommodation itself but allows you to receive support in a place of your choosing – a family home, for example. For this reason, it’s more suited to those with low to medium support needs who require less than 7 hours of support a day.
Home modifications can enable you to make changes to an existing house or apartment, so it’s fit for you to live in. These modifications could be small things, like changing the height of light switches, or major changes, like switching the home’s layout so you’re able to move through it independently.
Comfortable where you are?
Before we get into some handy tips, it’s important to point out that this article is written for people who wan to move out of aged care. If you’re comfortable living in a residential aged care facility and find it’s fulfilling your social and support needs, you are very welcome to stay there.
The NDIS is built around choice and control, and that includes supporting you if you choose to stay in aged care!