Supported Housing brings together publicly funded housing with support services that are essential to the wellbeing of people and whānau living in the home.
Supported Housing provides invaluable housing and support for people with intellectual disabilities, physically disabled people, people at risk of becoming homeless, people with mental health problems, people who have experienced domestic abuse, prisoners reintegrating into society, and many others.
This is a vital part of New Zealand's housing solution, and a key focus for Kāinga Ora.
Around 3,700 Kāinga Ora houses across the country are operated by over 240 specialist Supported Housing Providers, either as Transitional Housing, or Community Group Housing.
Our role in Supported Housing
To effectively deliver Supported Housing, Kāinga Ora works closely with funders and Supported Housing Provider organisations.
Funders decide what services they fund, for whom, and who provides them. Kāinga Ora supports through the provision of the home that we rent or lease either directly to a Funder or to a Provider organisation they have funded. Examples of Funders include Ara Poutama Aotearoa - Department of Corrections, Whaikaha - Ministry of Disabled People and the Te Manatū Whakahiato Ora - Ministry of Social Development.
Supported Housing Strategic Plan
Kāinga Ora has developed a Supported Housing Strategic Plan, which provides our people with strategic direction as we grow and evolve our provision of Transitional Housing and Community Group Housing for people and whānau in need.
Read a summary of the Strategic Plan [PDF, 1.3 MB].
Transitional Housing provides temporary accommodation for people and whānau with urgent housing needs, combined with support services to help them address their needs, including Work and Income services, budgeting advice and health services.
Transitional Housing is the bridge between less secure housing such as emergency accommodation in motels or staying with friends and family, and secure long-term accommodation.
Kāinga Ora leases homes to specialist third-party providers of Transitional Housing, who are contracted by Te Tūāpapa Kura Kāinga - Ministry of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
See how many Kāinga Ora homes we have in our Transitional Housing portfolio.
You can find out more about Transitional Housing on the HUD website(external link).
Become a Transitional Housing Provider
If you’d like to supply Transitional Housing services, visit the HUD website(external link) for information on how to apply.
Community Group Housing
Community Group Housing provides residential and non-residential community housing for people with specific and often complex needs. This can include:
- people living with mental illness
- people who have physical and/or intellectual disabilities
- people who abuse substances or have addictions
- people who require refuge
- families who need emergency housing
- children/youth at risk
- family support (such as Plunket, Barnardos, Tamariki Ora, budgeting).
Kāinga Ora rents or leases properties directly to specialist third-party Community Group Housing Providers. Homes are carefully selected to meet the needs of the Provider and their customers, and where required, Kāinga Ora will undertake modifications to ensure the home meets the agreed requirements.
Over half of the homes we provide are 1-, 2- and 3-bedroom properties, with the remainder being 4-, 5- and above. The largest property we provide for Community Group Housing has 18 bedrooms.
See how many Kāinga Ora homes we have in our Community Group Housing portfolio.
Become a Community Group Housing provider
Eligible organisations can apply directly with Kāinga Ora to become a Community Group Housing Provider in a Kāinga Ora home. To be eligible to apply for a home groups must be:
- funded to provide services by another government agency
- accredited, audited and monitored by another government agency to provide services
- a registered charity, incorporated society or a government funded provider and;
- have sufficient funding to operate and afford market rent, and have the appropriate governance process and management structure to support the service.
Groups providing Transitional Housing that is funded by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development or the Department of Corrections are not eligible for a Community Group Housing property.
To find out more about the eligibility criteria, call us on 0800 801 601.
Once eligibility has been confirmed, a Kāinga Ora Supported Housing representative will be in touch to go through the housing application either face-to-face or over the phone.
Our Community Group Housing Providers
If you rent or lease a community group home from us, this section contains relevant information for you.
Change in circumstances
Groups leasing or renting Community Group Housing properties are obligated to inform Kāinga Ora of any change in their circumstances, ideally well in advance of any change occuring. A change in circumstances for a Group can impact on their eligibility for a CGH property, compliance, rent support and obligations under your funding contract. This could include:
- changes to funding contracts
- change of service
- change to the group
- changes to sources of income
- changes in clients
- changes to property requirements
If a Community Group Housing group has changes coming up in the near future, or changes have already happened, please contact us on 0800 801 601 to discuss.
Rent Support Scheme
Services providing support for people in residential supported living situations, family, welfare and respite services (both residential and non-residential) may be eligible for Rent Support. The amount of the subsidy, and who can receive it, depends on the type of service provided.
The scheme is intended to support community groups who can demonstrate from the income they receive that they cannot meet market rent payable for the property that they rent from us. This includes income from the following sources:
- other government contracts specifically for rent
- contributions to rent from residents and/or service users
- donations or grants specifically for rent.
There is an expectation that the group will work towards paying market rent for the properties they rent from us, as the Rent Support Scheme is not a long term solution.
Rent support is not available for:
- Transitional housing services funded by Ministry of Social Development and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development (these services are also not eligible for a Community Group House).
- Services providing support for people in independent living situations.
- The costs of providing office space or staff accommodation.
The Rent Support Scheme is not a long term solution, and there is an expectation that the Group will work towards paying market rent for the properties they rent from us.
Rent support must be reviewed when there is any change in your circumstances, as this could affect eligibility. We aim to check this with you annually.
To find out more, call the Kāinga Ora service centre on 0800 801 601.
How often is a Rent Support application required?
A completed application for Rent Support, including full documentation, is required whenever there is a change in a group’s circumstances, including funding or service provision. We aim to check this with you annually. Funding contracts supplied as part of an application must show the full contractual figures.
Are Independent Living services eligible for Rent Support?
No, as people who are supported to live independently with minimal support are eligible for other accommodation subsidies, such as the Accommodation Supplement. The Ministry of Social Development (MSD) will be able to determine if your services users are entitled to receive other accommodation subsidies.
Can providers apply for Rent Support for transitional housing services funded by the Ministry of Social Development or the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development?
No, transitional housing services funded by the Ministry of Social Development and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development are not eligible for Rent Support, or for Community Group Housing. For more information, please contact your Funding Contracts Manager.
What do we take into account when we calculate Rent Support?
Depending on the service provided, there are a number of factors taken into account when we calculate Rent Support:
- Government funding received for rent;
- Rent contributions from service users;
- Donations and grants specifically for rent;
- The number of bedrooms in the property;
- The number of service users; and
- The number of bedrooms used as office space or for staff accommodation.
Are bedrooms used as office space or for staff accommodation covered by Rent Support?
If your agreement with us is to provide residential services, bedrooms used as staff accommodation or as office space will be excluded from the total number of bedrooms when we calculate the amount of Rent Support
If your agreement with us is to provide non-residential services, no one can reside at the property. Rent Support is calculated using funding, donations and service user contributions for rent. It does not take into account the number of bedrooms at the property.
What information do I use to give you the actual rent received figure?
Please look at your actual rent received from your service users for the previous financial year. You can then use this amount to estimate the rent received figure for the next year.
What period is required for the audited accounts?
Audited accounts provided should be for your last financial year as this is the most recent.
How do I provide the weekly funding amount for rent from the Government if it is not the same figure for each service user?
Please provide an average figure. This figure would be based on any rental amount received from your funding contract.
My funding contract does not show what amount is specifically for rent. What should I use?
Some contracts will clearly show what the rent amount is, but we do know this is not the case for all contracts. You will need to talk with your funder to identify the correct amount for rent. If you are still not able to work out how much is specifically for rent, we suggest you look at the previous year to work out how much of your funding went towards rent. You will then be able to give an estimate on how much of your Government funding will go towards rent in the current year.
My health contract has a per day rate with different amounts applied to the level of needs. How do I work this figure out for the Rent Support application?
Work out the rent portion of the per day rate, for each of your service users. The total figure from this is the figure you use in your application for Rent Support. If you have information from your previous year on what you received for rent, you can also use this to help work out what you think the rent portion is for the next year.
We receive a Ministry of Social Development Residential Support Subsidy for some of our clients. How do we know how much of the subsidy is towards rent?
The Residential Support Subsidy is intended to pay for accommodation and incidental costs for your client, from their benefit. Your client will receive a personal allowance from the Ministry of Social Development. You will need to tell us the amount of Residential Support Subsidy you receive on behalf of your clients, or how much rent or board you are charging your clients. For more information on the Residential Support Subsidy, please see the Ministry of Social Development website.
What documentation is required where the weekly market rent cannot be met?
Along with the documentation you have already provided for funding and budgets, you also need to show any plans you have for increasing your funding or income, such as fundraising or additional client charges. You should also show the level/s of your other costs.
If you have any further questions please contact your Supported Housing Regional Lead on 0800 801 601 or email us.
Page updated: 26 July 2023