Social Housing

Community Rooming Houses

What is it?

Community rooming houses are share houses that are managed by community-based organizations. This type of housing is subsidized with a person paying approximately 25%-30% of their income to rent. Different Community Housing Organizations use different rent models so it is important to check.

Community rooming houses operate similar to Private Rooming Houses in that each residents get their own bedroom and share other areas such as kitchen/bathroom/living room with other residents. The differences between community and private rooming houses lie in eligibility criteria and ownership of the houses.

Who can apply?

Each Community rooming house has their own eligibility criteria.

For example;

  • Women’s housing – Mt Martha (over 55), Sunshine (male only),
  • Wintringham – people over 55
  • Port Phillips housing - males only

Rent is charged and the person will need to have regular income.

How do I apply?

To access community rooming housing, a person needs to complete an application form. Each community rooming house service has their own application that you can access on their website.

It is best to call and confirm the application process and check for up to date application and referral processes.


  • Rent is subsidized making it very affordable
  • Houses are maintained and are in generally good condition
  • Because the houses are linked to community organizations, sometimes a tenant can access various services or community events
  • They often have basic furniture provided, in addition to kitchen and laundry applicances.
  • They can be long-term


  • Limited locations, and there are only a few in Melbourne
  • They are shared accommodations and this may not be suitable for some people
  • They are suitable for single adults, and there are rules around visitors