National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS)
The National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) is an Australian Government initiative supported by the Queensland Government.
It provides affordable, long-term rental accommodation for low to middle income earners.
NRAS properties are privately owned by property investors who are provided with incentives to rent their property to eligible applicants at a discounted rate of the market rent.
Approved NRAS providers, such as Churches of Christ Housing Services , manage properties on behalf of the investors.
- NRAS property portfolio
- Applying for NRAS properties
- Application approval
- Tips for Successful application
- Information for owners and investors
Churches of Christ Housing Services manages NRAS properties in various locations throughout South East and South West Queensland.
Properties range from two-bedroom apartments to five bedroom houses. The below table provides the types and locations of properties in the portfolio:
|Suburb||2 Bedroom||3 Bedrooms||4 Bedrooms||5 Bedrooms||Total|
Applying for a National Rental Affordability Scheme (NRAS) property is a three stage process.
Applicants must first register with the Queensland Government to ensure they meet the eligibility criteria.
Once applicants are registered for the scheme they can then begin to identify suitable properties and finally apply to NRAS providers to register your interest.
Stage 1 – Queensland Government registration
This stage is the initial registration process for the scheme with the Queensland Government.
Note – this stage is neither an application nor approval for an actual property.
If you have already registered for the scheme move on to stage 2.
- Go to https://www.qld.gov.au/housing/renting/nras/ to check your eligibility and complete an application. Alternatively print and submit the Queensland Government NRAS Tenancy Application Form.
- Your applicantion will be assessed and you will receive confirmation from the Queensland Government with regards to the outcome.
Stage 2 – Identify a suitable property
This stage is to identify available properties within preferred locations that best meet your unique needs within your particular budget.
- Go to www.realestate.com.au and search for us under “Find Agent” or proceed directly to: http://www.realestate.com.au/rent/by-xdphjr/list-1 and view properties currently available.
- Identify if any of the properties advertised are suitable for your needs. Consider the location, property size, maintenance (such as mowing), pets and rental affordability.
- The property’s weekly rent must be less than 30% of your household’s income to ensure it is affordable for you. This benchmark is an eligibility requirement of the scheme. For example: if you wish to apply for a property listed at $255.00 per week, you will need a minimum gross household income of $850 per week. If you are eligible for Commonwealth Rent Assistance, this will be assessed as part of your income.
Note – your application will be declined if the weekly rent exceeds this benchmark and you may need to consider alternative housing options.
Stage 3 – Applying for a Churches of Christ Housing Services’ property
This stage is to apply for an actual property, or properties becoming available within a particular location or housing estate.
Note – All forms can be downloaded via the links below, sent to you by email or collected from one of our offices.
- Read the Tenancy Agreement including the special terms and conditions.
- Complete our NRAS Tenancy Application Form. A separate form must be completed for each person aged over 18 years. Attach the required documentation, listed on the first page, to your application.
- Sign the NRAS Declaration Form and attach it to your application. A separate form is required for each applicant.
- Complete a Pet Application Form if you have a pet, or are intending to get a pet, that you wish to keep at the property.
- Lodge your completed application, including the supporting documentation. You can lodge your completed application by post, email, fax or in person to the office addressed on the form.
Note – incomplete applications will not be accepted, this includes applications with missing documentation. Due to the high volume of applications received, we will be unable to obtain or follow up these documents for you.
As part of the application process, we will obtain rental references from your current and previous lessors. We may also contact your employer (if applicable), personal referees and tenancy databases to verify the information provided in your application.
You will be advised the outcome of your application, either by telephone or letter. If your application is declined, where possible, we will advise the reason and try to provide you with advice on how you can strengthen your application in future.
If approved, you will be given the opportunity to inspect the property, if you have not already attended a prior viewing. In some situations, you may be one of many applicants who have been approved and are interested in a particular property.
If you are approved but unsuccessful in getting the property you applied for, we will hold your application on a database for 60 days for future properties. You should always advise us if you are no longer interested in a property or do not wish to be considered for future properties.
Applying for NRAS properties can be a competitive process due to the demand for affordable rental housing. It is important to ensure your application:
- is submitted as soon as possible;
- is completed in full;
- has one application form for each person aged over 18;
- has all of the required documents attached; and
- has up to date details, particularly phone numbers.
If you would like further assistance in applying for NRAS or private rental properties, contact your local RentConnect program. RentConnect is a Government initiative designed to help Queenslanders find secure and sustainable homes to rent in the private market.
RentConnect programs are generally run from local Department of Housing and Public Works Housing Service Centres (HSC). For more information or to find your local HSC phone 13 QGOV (13 74 68).
NRAS offers a substantial annual tax-free incentive for every dwelling built under its auspices. Investors need to apply for NRAS incentives and, if offered, must agree to rent approved dwellings at 20% or more below current market rates, to low and middle income households.
Incentives offered to owners and investors through NRAS are not available to standard residential property investors.
Each approved dwelling attracts the NRAS incentive for 10 years, so long as investors continue to comply with conditions around tenant eligibility and rent discounts.
The current annual income-tax free incentive is $10,350 per dwelling, and is indexed each year to the rental component of the Consumer Price Index. The incentive comprises of:
- an Australian Government contribution of $7,763 per dwelling per year (as a refundable tax offset or payment)
- a State or Territory Government contribution of $2,587 per dwelling per year (in direct or in-kind financial support).
The incentive provided through NRAS assists investors and property developers to work up proposals that offer an attractive and competitive rate of return.
The Australian Government is committed to ensuring that the full value of the NRAS incentive is passed to all investors.
Prospective investors are encouraged to talk to the Australian Tax Office before finalising their investment structure or applying for NRAS incentives, to ensure this policy objective is achieved.
The Australian Government has no legal or equitable claim over an NRAS property.
For further information about NRAS, please visit the Department of Social Security’s website by clicking here.