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18 September 2018

Housing Affordability Glossary

ratio: has decided as a collective group to explore the issue of affordable housing and bring this debate to our clients, peers and the development community. We will, over the next couple of months, contribute and add to the debate and most significantly, suggest solutions.

There are a number of terms used throughout our Housing Affordability series that have multiple interpretations. For the purposes of clarification, we've put together a glossary of terms as we've used them.

Affordable Housing

Affordable housing is housing, including social housing, that is appropriate for the housing needs of any of the following—

        (a)     very low income households;

        (b)     low income households;

        (c)     moderate income households.

(as defined at section 3AA of the Planning & Environment Act 1987)

Ratio Note: Affordable housing can be affordable for rental or purchase, and does not need to be under the control of the State Government or a Community Housing Provider.   

Refer to the chart of income ranges, bottom right.

Social Housing

Social housing is :

        (a)     public housing; and

        (b)     housing owned, controlled or managed by a participating registered agency.

(as defined in the Housing Act 1983)

Ratio note: A “participating registered agency” is commonly referred to as a community housing association.

Public Housing

Rental housing owned and managed by the Director of Housing (the State Government). Public housing generally provides for people in the “very low” and “low” income ranges who would otherwise be at risk of homelessness. Rent is charged at no more than 25% of total household income.

Community Housing

Social housing that is owned or managed by a community housing agency that is regulated by the Government.  Currently in Victoria, these agencies only handle rental housing. A list of current registered agencies can be found here:  

ha glossary
ha glossary income table