Contact us: +61 8 8226 8800

Department of Human Services

South Australian Housing Trust

Home visits policy

Housing SA uses home visits to:

  • build relationships with tenants
  • identify and respond to any support needs tenants and members of their household may have
  • improve the way Housing SA manages tenancies
  • check the condition of properties.

All Housing SA tenants receive a home visit, except if either:

  • they’re on eviction status
  • they’re housed on the Progressive Purchase Scheme
  • they’re housed in a joint venture property
  • the property’s leased to a metropolitan-based domestic violence service
  • the property’s in the Homelessness Supportive Housing Program
  • the property’s in a Specialised Housing Program.

Organisations leasing properties from Housing SA have their own policies around visiting tenants at home.

A lease review is considered a home visit for people who either:

  • are on a Direct Lease, Short Term lease or probationary lease agreement
  • are on a one year fixed term lease agreement
  • are in the final year of a 2, 5 or 10 year fixed term lease agreement
  • have moved from a probationary lease to a fixed term lease agreement in the last six months.

Scheduling and attending home visits

Home visits happen at least once every 12 months. Tenants may receive a home visit more often than this if any of the below apply:

  • to help manage any tenancy or support issues
  • if they’re included on an intervention order
  • if the tenant has recently been transferred
  • to follow up that property condition issues have been resolved.

Tenants receive at least 7 days’ but no more than 14 days’ written notice of a home visit.

If a tenant doesn’t provide access to the property, or any part of the property, Housing SA may take action through the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal to get access.

Tenants who can’t attend either:

  • contact Housing SA to reschedule
  • nominate a third party, also known as a proxy, to attend on their behalf.

Rescheduling a home visit

Home visits can be brought forward by up to six months or postponed for up to three months if any of the below apply:

  • the tenant’s unavailable due to a medical operation or period of hospitalisation
  • the tenant will be away from the property for a significant period of time - eg interstate
  • the tenant or other occupant’s excluded under the terms of an interim intervention order
  • a home detention application outcome’s pending.

If the home visit is also a lease review, the home visit can only be rescheduled to a date before the end of the lease agreement, also known as the Conditions of Tenancy.

During a home visit

Housing SA staff wear identification at home visits and tenants may ask to see it. Tenants may be asked to provide identification at the home visit.

During the home visit Housing SA:

  • explains the purpose of the visit
  • gives the tenant a chance to talk about any concerns they might have about their tenancy
  • inspects all rooms in the property to make sure they’re kept in good condition
  • inspects the yard, garden and tenant alterations - eg sheds, caravans
  • talks to the tenant about their obligations under their lease agreement
  • asks about the whereabouts and wellbeing of any children aged five and under who are known to live at the property, if they aren’t there during the home visit
  • reports any known breaches of an intervention order to the police
  • identifies and reports any health and safety maintenance issues, including checking smoke alarms and reporting it if they aren’t working, to Housing SA Maintenance
  • identifies if the tenant or other occupant may be vulnerable or at risk, and needs support
  • collects any information regarding the tenancy or the property that Housing SA needs - eg other occupants, overcrowding.

Related information

Controlling documents

This policy is based on and complies with:

Supporting guidelines

  • Home visit guidelines v2

Date this policy applies from

28 March 2019

Version number

2

The online version of the policy is the approved and current version. There is no guarantee that any printed copies are current.

State Government of South Australia © Copyright DHS [sm v5.4.7.1] .


Provided by:
SA Department for Human Services
URL:
https://dhs.sa.gov.au/services/sa-housing-authority/housing-policies/managing-tenancies/home-visits-policy
Last Updated:
05 Jul 2018
Printed on:
22 May 2019
The DHS website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia Licence. © Copyright 2016