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Household—greatest need reason, code N

Identifying and definitional attributes

Metadata item type:Help on this termData Element
Short name:Help on this termGreatest need reason
METeOR identifier:Help on this term301720
Registration status:Help on this termHousing assistance, Superseded 01/05/2013
Definition:Help on this term

The nature of need identified for low income households at the time of allocation, as represented by a code.

Data Element Concept:Household—greatest need reason

Value domain attributes

Representational attributes

Representation class:Help on this termCode
Data type:Help on this termNumber
Format:Help on this termN
Maximum character length:Help on this term1
Permissible values:Help on this term
ValueMeaning
1Homeless
2Life or safety at risk in accommodation
3Health condition aggravated by housing
4Housing inappropriate to needs
5Very high housing costs
Supplementary values:Help on this term
9Not stated/inadequately described

Collection and usage attributes

Guide for use:Help on this term

Code 1. Homeless: Homeless, for the purpose of the priority access national standard, is defined as a household with no housing or a household residing in temporary or emergency accommodation at the time of housing allocation. It includes households who:

  • lived in accommodation provided by a Supported Accommodation Assistance Program (SAAP) agency or some other form of emergency accommodation;
  • were totally without permanent shelter (e.g. wandered from place to place, slept out on the street or on park benches);
  • lived in shelter that was unlawful such as those who were forced to squat in derelict buildings; or
  • stayed temporarily with friends or relatives in the short term (e.g. up to a maximum of 6 weeks duration).

Code 2. Life or safety was at risk in their accommodation: This includes situations where people were:

  • subject to domestic violence; or
  • subject to sexual/emotional abuse; or
  • subject to child abuse; or
  • at risk of violence or who feared for their safety in the home environment.

Violence is defined as any incident involving the occurrence, attempt or threat of either physical or sexual assault. Physical assault involves the use of physical force with the intent to harm or frighten a person. The threat to harm should only be included if it is believed the harm is likely to be carried out. Sexual assault includes acts of a sexual nature against a person's will through the use of physical force, intimidation or coercion, or any attempts to do this.

Code 3. Health condition aggravated by housing: It includes people who lived in the following situations:

  • Medical condition or disability which rendered their housing unsuitable (e.g. disabled person who required modified accommodation, elderly persons who were housebound due to mobility problems in highset dwellings);
  • appropriate housing stock was either not available, or not available at an affordable cost, in the private rental market (e.g. dwellings with appropriate modifications for a person with a disability);
  • a health condition or disability which was caused or exacerbated by the living situation.

Code 4. Housing inappropriate to needs: This category captures housing situations that indicate a person did not have access to safe and secure housing at the time of allocation and these situations are not included in categories 1 to 3 above (people with housing affordability issues are captured in category 5). Inappropriate housing includes persons who:

  • lived in poor housing locations that resulted in isolation from community services, social networks and support systems, and these services and supports were necessary to maintain independent living. This category includes families that were divided due to their housing situation; or
  • lived in overcrowded situations where an additional two bedrooms was required for adequate housing according to the proxy occupancy standard; or
  • were unable to access accommodation in the private rental market due to discrimination. Discrimination refers to a person who was treated unfairly because they belonged to a particular group of people. Types of discrimination include: sex; race; age; marital status; sexual orientation; or disability (Anti-discrimination Board); or
  • lived in situations where their tenure was insecure and they had received an eviction notice (either written or verbal) and they had no access to adequate legislative protection; or
  • lived in housing that had severe structural or other maintenance problems (e.g. property had been declared unfit for human habitation, severe dampness, lacked essential facilities such as cooking or bathroom).

Code 5. Very high housing costs: This category identifies households that paid 41% or more of their income in rent at the time of housing allocation. This definition is not intended to suggest that households paying between 30-41% of income on rent live in affordable housing situations. The definition aims to capture the group of the population who experience the more severe end of housing affordability problems and the group for which literature suggests are least able to decrease their housing costs.

Source and reference attributes

Submitting organisation:Help on this termNational Housing Data Development Committee

Data element attributes

Collection and usage attributes

Collection methods:Help on this term

More than one greatest need reason can be recorded for a household.

In counting the total number of greatest need households, each household should only be counted once.

Comments:Help on this term

The definition of 'homeless' used here for the priority access national standard is different to the SAAP Homeless definition.

It should be noted that as housing assistance allocation practices vary across:

  • states and territories within a collection
  • across data collections within states and territories

caution should be used when interpreting information and/or making comparisons in relation to this metadata item.

Source and reference attributes

Submitting organisation:Help on this termNational Housing Data Development Committee

Relational attributes

Related metadata references:Help on this term

See also Household—greatest need date, DDMMYYYY Housing assistance, Superseded 30/08/2017

Has been superseded by Household—greatest need reason, code N Housing assistance, Superseded 30/08/2017

Supersedes Household—greatest need status, code N Housing assistance, Superseded 10/02/2006

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