Assisting Victorians at risk of homelessness to access the private rental market

VincentCare’s HomeDirect program provides early intervention designed to assist Victorians at risk of homelessness to access the private rental market. A joint venture between VincentCare and the Society of St Vincent de Paul, the program will initially assist up to 200 vulnerable Victorians and their families to access safe and secure housing.

HomeDirect targets people at risk of homelessness, providing a foothold in the overcrowded private rental market and enabling people to escape the indignity of couch-surfing and residing in accommodation such as rooming houses and caravan parks.

With tenants often spending significantly more than a third of their income on rent and competing with hundreds of applicants for rental vacancies, the program provides support to three groups: women and their children escaping family violence, Victorians who are economically vulnerable and people who have experienced chronic or repeated homelessness.

In the past decade the availability of affordable housing in metropolitan Melbourne has declined from 30.2% to 8.5%.

In December 2015, only 0.3% of one-bedroom dwellings across inner Melbourne were affordable to single people on a low income.