Ngoonbi is funded by both State and Federal Government

40 Coondoo Street, Kuranda QLD 4881(07) 4093 7177ngoonbi@ngoonbi.org.au

Ngoonbi Housing Program

Ngoonbi Housing Program

Providing affordable housing and services for eligible Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community members.

Welcome!

Ngoonbi Community Services Indigenous Corporation is a ‘not-for-profit’ community organisation that offers long term affordable housing for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community in the Kuranda Region.

Ngoonbi is a Community Housing Provider under the Social Housing System and receive funding from the Queensland Government – Department of Housing and Public Works.

Originally established in 1975, Ngoonbi has grown from a Co-operative Society to a Corporation, facilitating and delivering a range of programs and services.

Ngoonbi Housing consists of 18 Long Term Social Housing Properties, 2 Private Rental Properties, a Disability Share house with 3 x2 bedroom units and a further 7 properties being built. Ngoonbi is committed to assisting tenants with any information regarding rentals in Community and Social housing services and referrals to health, work and social programs.

Office Hours:  Monday – Friday  |  8:30 am – 4:30 pm.

Housing Office Hours: Monday – Thursday  /  8.00am – 4.00pm

40 Coondoo Street  |  PO Box 26

Kuranda QLD 4881

Ph:  (07) 40937177  |  Fax:  (07) 40937466

Coordinator Housing & Building Services (JP Qualified) :  0434 742946

(Please call first to arrange an appointment)

Email:  housing@ngoonbi.org.au

Housing Applications

If you are currently seeking housing, there is an application process to be completed. An application form is provided at reception or at the Housing Office. You can also download an Application Form (Form 7) and review the Department of Housing Selection criteria from their website using this link:  http://www.hpw.qld.gov.au/Housing/SocialHousing/CommunityHousing/Pages/InformationForApplicantsAndTenants.aspx

The department’s fact sheet on Housing Entitlement provides additional information and can be downloaded from the department’s website at:  http://www.hpw.qld.gov.au/SiteCollectionDocuments/HousingEntitlements.pdf

Ngoonbi also requires that you become an annual member of the organisation and continue your membership during your tenancy.

To be an approved member of Ngoonbi Community Services Indigenous Corporation you must be an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander who resides in the Mareeba Shire Council area and over 18 years of age. The cost of membership is $5 per year and needs to be paid each year as part of your tenancy.

Brief Overview of the Allocation Process 

The following is a brief overview of the allocation process:

  • The Department of Housing and Public Works process housing applications, assess applicants’ housing needs and maintains the housing register.
  • Ngoonbi will notify the housing service centre when a property has or will soon become vacant.
  • The Cairns Housing Service Centre identifies eligible applicants on the housing register whose application matches the available property.
  • The Cairns Housing Service Centre provides a shortlist of applicants to Ngoonbi on a referral report to be selected by the CEO and the Board.
  • The CEO determines the final match of applicant to property and makes an offer of accommodation to the applicant.
  • The applicant will be given the opportunity to view the property before deciding to accept or decline the offer.
  • Ngoonbi notifies the Housing Service Centre of the applicants on the referral report that will not receive an offer of housing.
  • Ngoonbi advises the Housing Service Centre of applicant’s acceptance or rejection of the offer. The Housing Service Centre records the outcome of the allocation process.
  • Once the applicant has accepted the offer, the applicant signs a General Tenancy agreement (Form 18a) in accordance with Residential & Rooming Accommodation Act, and Community Housing requirements.
  • The sign up process usually takes about an hour. All tenants receive a Ngoonbi Tenant Information Booklet and a Form 17a Pocket guide for tenants. The keys for the property are issued at the sign up.

Ongoing Eligibility for Community Housing with Ngoonbi  

From the 1st July 2014 all tenants in long term social housing managed by Ngoonbi Community Services Indigenous Corporation are housed only for the duration period of their need. Section 14(2) of the Housing Regulation 2015 requires funded providers to implement the Social Housing Eligibility Criteria.

Housing assistance is provided to low income earners in the greatest need for the duration of that need. The ongoing eligibility policy considers whether a household has improved its circumstances and no longer needs housing assistance. These households are required to vacate the property and transition into the private rent market or home ownership.

A tenant’s ongoing eligibility for long term social housing will be reviewed annually, from the date of the signed General Tenancy Agreement. The Housing Coordinator will ensure that the tenant/s return the completed rent review and eligibility forms. The tenant/s will be informed if their housing assistance ends and will be offered assistance to find a new home.

Ineligible households are given a transition period of four months to vacate their property. Tenants can vacate their property at any time during this four-month transition period.

These Policies can be downloaded from the department’s web site at:  http://www.hpw.qld.gov.au/SiteCollectionDocuments/duration-of-need.pdf

Changing Tenants Needs  

Ngoonbi will respond to the changing housing needs of its tenants fairly and flexibly within the capacity of the Organisation. The Housing Coordinator will assist tenants who need to transfer into another Community or Social housing property or apply to mutually exchange property with another tenant of the Organisation.

Households who under occupy a property may be asked to transfer to a smaller property or a household who is over occupying a property may be asked to transfer to a larger property.

All occupants of Ngoonbi properties must be approved. A rent review is conducted annually, but if household members change, so will the rent. Contact the office to request a rent review if your household members change throughout the year.

Applications for Transfer and other information is available at the Department of Housing website using the following link:  http://www.hpw.qld.gov.au/aboutus/ReportsPublications/FormsTemplates/Pages/CommunityHousingProviders.aspx#4

Ending Tenancies

General Tenancy agreements can only be ended in accordance with the Residential Tenancies and Rooming Accommodation Act 2008. Tenancies may be voluntarily ended by the tenant or in a small number of circumstances tenancies may be forcibly terminated by the Organisation.

Ngoonbi will ensure that its tenancies are ended in a way that is legal and minimises the impact on tenants. Ngoonbi may offer assistance and referrals where possible in finding a new home.

All terms of General Tenancy Agreements are Periodic. If you wish to end your GTA two weeks’ notice in writing is required. Fill out an RTA Form 13 Notice of Intention to leave form which can be either downloaded from the RTA website or provided by your housing Coordinator. Ngoonbi requires you’re forwarding residential address for RTA purposes.

Form 13, Notice of Intention to Leave link – https://www.rta.qld.gov.au/Forms-and-publications/Forms/Forms-for-general-tenancies/Notice-of-intention-to-leave-Form-13

If Ngoonbi requests you to leave, a tenant will be given 2 months’ notice in writing using RTA Form 12, unless there is a breach involved and it will be in accordance to the timeframe given. The reasons Ngoonbi will be asking you to leave is either;

  • We wish to renovate, demolish or change ownership of the property.
  • Changing circumstances with your community housing eligibility.
  • Due to a failure to remedy breaches.

Form 12, Notice to Leave Link – https://www.rta.qld.gov.au/Forms-and-publications/Forms/Forms-for-general-tenancies/Notice-to-leave-Form-12

Privacy and Confidentiality

We understand that clients are concerned about their privacy and the confidentiality and security of information that is provided to Ngoonbi. The information regarding your tenancy is confidential; however with your written permission by signing a consent form, some information is shared with the Department of Housing and Public Works, Centrelink and other Community Services, to assist you with your tenancy.

We are committed to protecting your privacy and collect, store, use, and disclose personal information responsibly and transparently when we deliver housing services and conduct business.

All staff, management committee members, volunteers and contractors, carrying out duties on behalf of Ngoonbi Community Services Indigenous Corporation, will observe professional duty of care with regard to keeping confidential information about clients and tenants.

Personal information will not be collected unless the information is for a lawful purpose that is directly related to Ngoonbi’s operations. Ngoonbi manages personal information in accordance with the Information Privacy Principles described in the Information Privacy Act 2009.

The Information Privacy Act 2009 can be viewed at – https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/view/whole/html/inforce/2017-06-05/act-2009-014

What are your Tenant Responsibilities?

The tenant/s must:

  • Pay the rent on time and in the way outlined in the tenancy agreement.
  • Be two weeks rent paid ahead at all times.
  • Abide by the terms of the tenancy agreement and special terms.
  • Keep the property clean and tidy.
  • Report any repairs or maintenance in a timely manner.
  • Prevent damage to the property.
  • Use premises for legal purposes only.
  • Respect neighbour’s rights to peace and quiet.
  • Seek approval for all tenants and occupants living in the premises.
  • The Tenant listed on the General Tenancy Agreement must remain living at the property to be eligible for ongoing housing.
  • Pest Control except for Termites.
  • Changing standard light globes.
  • Organising Content insurance.
  • Maintain the lawns, shrubs & plants.
  • Electricity.
  • Gas.
  • Phone.

Tenants are responsible for damages incurred to the property by occupants, invited guests or family. All damage is to be reported directly to the Housing Coordinator.

Tenants cannot make any alterations or changes to the property without written consent from Ngoonbi. Alterations include: Hooks in walls, shelving on walls, planting trees or constructing garden beds, concrete, painting or wall papering, Installation of air-conditioners, adding any structures including walls, sheds or awnings, installation of irrigation and Pay TV.

Pets are only permitted at the properties if it is written in your General Tenancy Agreement. Approval to have a pet at the property must be given in writing by Ngoonbi. Pet application forms can be obtained at the Housing Office. If approval is granted, all dogs and cats must be registered and Council By-Laws followed.

You may download the pet application form at – http://ngoonbi.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/Pet_Application.pdf

Bond

A rental bond is a security deposit paid at the start of a tenancy and is lodged with the RTA. Ngoonbi requires a bond to be paid of an amount equivalent to two weeks rent. If the rent increases throughout the tenancy, the bond will need to be increased.

Rent

Tenants are asked to pay rent in advance before, or when moving into a property.

Rent is based on your household income and calculated using the Department of Housing and Public Works, Community Housing Rent Calculator. Rent is to be paid by a number of options listed on the General Tenancy Agreement – by Centrepay deductions, Direct Debit with your bank, Direct Deposit into Ngoonbi’s Bank, or Cash at the Office. Tenant’s must ensure the rent is paid promptly and regularly. Tenants can ask for a copy of the rent ledger at any time and it will also be posted each month.

Tenants must report any changes to income or household structure to Ngoonbi as it occurs. Tenants are encouraged to attend the housing office to discuss financial circumstances for payment plans if needed and review occupants of the property that can contribute to rental payments.

All tenants are required to undergo a rent review annually in conjunction with the eligibility review. The rent review will determine if the rent will remain the same, increase or decrease. If rent increases, two months’ notice will be given to tenants. If rent decreases, it will decrease from the tenants next rent charge date.

Only exact cash money can be paid at the office, no change can be given.  Cash can only be accepted up until 3:00pm each week day due to the closure of the local bank.

What types of income are used to assess rent for the rent review?   

Ngoonbi considers all assessable income types when assessing a tenant’s rent calculation as part of the annual rent review. To view the assessable and non assessable income types click on the link:  http://www.hpw.qld.gov.au/SiteCollectionDocuments/CommunityHousingRentPolicy2013.pdf

All general income is considered assessable when determining rent payable by tenants. Assessable income includes pensions, benefits and allowances, wages and work allowances, and other income sources.

The Community Housing Rent Policy aims to be as fair, simple, efficient, consistent and incentive-based as possible.

  • Tenants in a property managed by Ngoonbi will have their rent assessed at 25 percent of the household’s assessable income, plus the Commonwealth Rent Assistance to which all eligible household members are entitled.
  • Commonwealth Rent Assistance is not considered income and therefore is not assessed at 25 percent. Instead, Ngoonbi add the total Commonwealth Rent Assistance to which all household members are entitled, to the rent assessment. If a household is deemed eligible for Commonwealth Rent Assistance, the total amount of Commonwealth Rent Assistance to which they are entitled is added to their rent, regardless of whether they receive the payment or not.
  • Rent in each of the properties remains affordable to tenants.
  • All rents will be calculated using the same method for all tenancies.
  • The method of calculating rent is clearly explained to all tenants.
  • Tenants are provided with a number of rental payment options.
  • Rent accounts are managed to prevent serious rent arrears.
  • The Organisation will assess rent of the household income as per the Department of Housing and Public Works, Community Housing Rent Calculator.
  • The maximum rent amount is the market rent for the property.

How to make a complaint

If you have a complaint that relates to dissatisfaction with an area of service delivery within the Organisation including a service provided by a staff member, contractor or third party working on behalf of Ngoonbi, or regarding a neighbouring tenant, please follow the instructions below:

  • Take the appropriate form provided (in the office or download online).
  • Fill out the form with as much detailed information as possible.
  • Hand the form into a senior staff member for processing or email to Ngoonbi. (admin@ngoonbi.org.au)

A complaint form can be downloaded from the following link: http://ngoonbi.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/Complaint_Form.pdf

The complaint will be processed according to Ngoonbi’s Consumer Complaints and Appeals Policy and Procedures.

All complaints or appeals are strictly confidential and can be anonymous. If the complaint is anonymous, keep in mind, an opportunity for feedback will not be possible.

Complaint procedure

The consumer complaints process allows a client of the Organisation or a third party to formally express their dissatisfaction, have their point of view heard and obtain some form of recourse or resolution.

The consumer complaints representative of the relevant program, is the person responsible for the management of the process for resolving a consumer complaint.

The consumer complaints representative is either the CEO or a person delegated by the CEO.

The complainant will be advised in writing within one month about the outcome of the complaint but not the details of the actions due to privacy.

If the consumer is not satisfied with the outcome of the complaint, they should contact the CEO in writing and can then be referred to a member of the Board to assist, The Dispute resolution centre or The Department of Housing & Public Works.

Who are the nominated repairers?

Tenants who call and arrange for repairs after hours, other than for emergency repairs may be charged for the cost of the after hours call out fee.  All other repairs are considered routine repairs.

If there is an emergency, please call the nominated repairers listed.  A list of emergency repairs is listed in the Tenant Information Handbook (please see Tenant Information Handbook tab).

The nominated repairers are;

  • Seagulls Electrical 0418 739 209, or
  • Jarramali (electrical) 0420 299 808
  • On Tap Plumbing 0438 587 753

In an after hours emergency you may also contact the Coordinator Housing & Building Services mobile number 0434 742 946 .

For more detailed information about our Ngoonbi Housing Program please download our Tenant Information Handbook (PDF) from the following link:

http://www.ngoonbi.org.au/Tenant_Information_Handbook.pdf  (free printed version available at office)

Feel free to also call or visit our office!

 

Office Hours:  Monday – Friday  |  8:30 am – 4:30 pm.

Housing Office Hours: Monday – Thursday  /  8.00am – 4.00pm

40 Coondoo Street  |  PO Box 26

Kuranda QLD 4881

Ph:  (07) 40937177  |  Fax:  (07) 40937466

Coordinator Housing & Building Services (JP Qualified):  0434 742 946  (Please call first to arrange an appointment)

Email:  housing@ngoonbi.org.au

For more information about the Ngoonbi Housing Program

Please contact:

  • Wendy Pritchard
  • Coordinator Housing & Building Services (JP Qualified)
  • Ngoonbi Office
  • 40 Coondoo Street
  • Kuranda QLD 4881
  • PO Box 26
  • Kuranda QLD 4881