RA is a supplementary payment added on to the pension, allowance or benefit of income support recipients and low-income families in the private rental market, in recognition of the housing costs they face.
RA cannot be claimed on its own. It is only paid if a person is being paid a social security pension, allowance or benefit. In addition, the person must be paying rent above a specified minimum threshold amount. This includes CDEP participants who are income support recipients. RA is paid at the rate of 75 cents for each dollar of rent paid above the rent threshold (1.1.R.190), subject to a specified maximum rate. Rent thresholds and maximum rates of RA (1.1.M.60) vary depending on the person's family circumstances. For single people without children, the maximum rate also varies according to whether or not accommodation is shared with others.
RA is paid fortnightly with the recipient's main payment.
Last reviewed: 11 August 2011