Rent setting for registered housing agencies

Registered Housing Agencies (RHA) are required to set rents which are affordable for tenants, while maintaining financial viability for the agency.

A key way the Victorian Government offers affordable housing to those unable to afford or access the private housing market is by partnering with Registered Housing Agencies (RHAs) to provide community housing.

The Department of Families, Fairness and Housing has established policies to ensure that government funds provided to RHAs are targeted to those most in need. Compliance with these policies is generally a written condition of capital grant funding or stock transfer.


For income and asset eligibility for community housing funded by us, see Social housing income and asset limits page on the Housing website.

Other eligibility criteria

RHAs have the discretion to determine their own policy approach for other eligibility criteria, like permanent residency and outstanding debts to Homes Victoria.

Rent setting and affordability

RHAs are required to set rents which are affordable for tenants while maintaining financial viability.

For lower income households, the ‘Net Rent’ charged at the commencement of a tenancy should be set at no more than 30% of gross household income. ‘Net Rent’ is the rent charged to tenants minus Commonwealth Rent Assistance. Details of the 30% limit are outlined in the following table:

Household Income Limits for 30% net rent requirement for tenants of DHHS funded community housing

Cut off point for 30% net rent ** requirement Household: 1 person Household: 2 persons Household: 3+ persons
Tenants earning under these amounts should not pay more than 30% of household income as net rent

$702 gross per week


$1,078 gross per week


$1,489 gross per week


** Applicable from 1 October 2019. Gross household income from all sources is used, net of Commonwealth Rent Assistance. Calculations based on the maximum income eligibility limits for Commonwealth Rent Assistance.

Reporting to the Housing Registrar

RHAs will be required to report to the Housing Registrar on the rent charged for low income households, and to have hardship provisions in place for those instances where tenants’ income reduces significantly

Guidelines for registered housing agencies