Frequently Asked Questions
Am I eligible for Housing?
If you are a teacher employed under the Teaching Services Act 1980 or the TAFE Commission Act 1990 you are entitled to apply for accommodation in the town that you are appointed to (permanently or temporarily), for the period of your appointment. Casual teachers are entitled to apply for accommodation in the town where they are engaged by the school/TAFE, as long as they are employed at least three (3) days per week. Casual teachers have a lower priority for housing than permanent and temporary teachers.
Please refer to our Housing and Eligibility Allocation Policy for more information on how we allocate our housing. Also, if you have previously lived in Housing Services accommodation, and have an unpaid debt from your previous tenancy, you will not be considered for housing until that debt is paid.
How can I find out whether Housing Services has accommodation in the location I have been appointed to?
Housing Services have housing throughout rural and remote New South Wales, please call us on 1300 137 343 for up-to-date information regarding accommodation vacancies. We do not service areas where there is an adequate rental market, such as metropolitan Sydney or major regional city centres.
How do I pay my rent?
If you are a permanently or temporarily-appointed teacher, two weeks rent will be deducted automatically from your salary every fortnight. This is not negotiable and rent cannot be paid any other way. We will make arrangements for deductions to start as soon as possible after you have moved in. If you are a teacher on Department of Education's casual payroll, or if you are a permanent teacher on unpaid temporary leave, you must make arrangements to pay rent directly to the Teacher Housing Authority. Your rent account must be paid on time and fourteen days in advance as stated in your lease agreement. You can pay by direct deposit to Teacher Housing Authority bank account. You cannot pay rent to your Agent. Your Tenancy Services Officer will provide you with all the details needed to ensure your payment is correctly receipted to your rental account.
How do I pay my bond?
We require payment of four weeks rental bond by all tenants residing in a property owned or managed by Housing Services. We collect, lodge and claim/return the bond at the end of tenancy in accordance with the provisions of the Residential Tenancies Act 2010.
- You will be required to pay four (4) weeks of the market rent of your property as bond at the commencement of your tenancy
- Permanent and temporary Teachers appointed longer than one term can elect to pay their bond by salary deduction over a maximum of four (4) fortnightly instalments
- Casual teachers must make arrangements to pay their bond in one lump sum directly to Housing Services at the time the offer of accommodation is accepted
Teachers who pay their bond in one lump sum are entitled to receive a 10% discount. Please ensure cheques are made payable to the Rental Bond Board. Your bond will be lodged with the Rental Bond Board (RBB) and you will be issued a receipt of lodgement by the RBB.
Am I eligible for the Department of Education Rental Subsidy?
To receive the rental subsidy, you must have a current active Application for Housing with the Teacher Housing Authority. If the Teacher Housing Authority is unable to meet your housing needs (under the Housing Eligibility and Allocation ) a Housing Services Subsidy Letter will be issued to you identifying the type of housing you are eligible for and a market rent payable (based on the Teacher Housing Authority's market rent of accommodation within the town you are appointed to). The Teacher Housing Authority Subsidy Letter is to be submitted to the DoE along with the DoE's Application for Rental Subsidy. Teacher Housing Authority does not make determinations or manage the payment of Rental Subsidy, and all enquiries regarding the application for and/or payment of subsidy should be directed to DoE Staffing Services by phoning 13 10 75, or by referring to the Rental Subsidy section of the DoE Salaries & Allowances webpage.
Do I need to connect utilities in my Teacher Housing Authority accommodation?
It is the tenants responsibility to contact utility service providers to connect (and disconnect services at the end of the tenancy) electricity, gas and telephone. The Teacher Housing Authority pays for the cost of water usage.
Is furniture included in the accommodation?
While our houses do not include furniture, furniture is provided in our villa units.
Furnished villa units include:
• Lounge Suite (1 x 2 seat and 2 x 1 seat) or sofa bed for a 1 bedroom villa unit
• Double bed or Queen bed (1 x each bedroom)
• Dining suite (table and 4 chairs)
• Coffee table
• Washing Machine
• Curtains and/ or blinds
A furnished dwelling only includes the furniture and appliances listed above. Housing Services does not provide additional appliances (including kettle, television, stereo, or microwave), linen, pillows, crockery, utensils, etc.
Are pets allowed in Teacher Housing Authority accommodation?
You are permitted to keep domestic pets on Teacher Housing Authority properties, provided they are appropriate to the type of property and that you maintain control over its activities. We are guided by the Companion Animals Act 1998 to determine if a pet is appropriate to the property type.
Your pets are not permitted inside the main residential building forming part of the property.
Pets must not create a nuisance or cause damage to our property. The property must be kept in a clean and hygienic condition at all times. You will be required to arrange or meet the cost of repairing any damage to the property caused by your pet, including to lawns and grounds. Tenants in villa units must ensure that pet faeces and toys are removed from the lawn and gardens, and that your pets are removed or restrained, when grounds maintenance is being undertaken. Housing Services has sole discretion to direct you to remove a pet or other animal from the property by giving you seven (7) days’ notice.
What does the Managing Agent do?
In most locations we have a service agreement with a real estate agent to provide a tenancy liaison service to our tenants. You will have met your Agent when you collected keys and signed your Lease Agreement.
Your Agent is your first point of contact for all issues relating to property maintenance and repairs.
- Undertake inspections before and after your tenancy, and every six months
- Hold keys to the property
- Arrange maintenance identified by you, or by their agency at inspections
- Arrange lawn mowing and grounds maintenance for unit accommodation
- Act on behalf of Housing Services as required.
Agents do not collect rent or bonds from teacher tenants, allocate housing, approve transfers between properties and cannot arrange for utility services to be connected or disconnected, including air coolers.
If you feel that your Agent is not providing you with an acceptable level of service and communication, particularly in relation to maintenance, we encourage you to resolve it together. If that is not successful you should contact your Tenancy Services Officer.
Who is responsible for maintaining the lawns, gardens and gutters at Teacher Housing Authority properties?
Teacher Housing Authority meet the cost of maintenance to lawns, grounds and gutters for villa unit accommodation, due to the large area of common land. This work will be organised by your Agent and carried out on a regular basis. You should find out what day this work is being done as you are responsible for removing toys, pet items (including pet faeces) from the lawns and grounds so it is clear for lawn mowing. Pets must be restrained or removed while work is undertaken. The grounds contractor will not fill holes or repair damage caused by your family or your pets. Tenants in houses are responsible for maintaining the lawns, grounds and gutters at their own expense. We strongly recommend that you engage a licensed and insured professional to undertake gutter cleaning and tree trimming. Your Agent can advise you of suitable tradespeople and/or arrange this work at your cost.
How do I request that a repair be undertaken?
Your Managing Agent is your first point of contact for all maintenance you require to the property. All maintenance requests must be made in writing to your Managing Agent.
Please download and complete our Maintenance Request Form, which can be faxed, emailed or posted to your Managing Agent.
I want to leave my Teacher Housing Authority accommodation. What is the process?
There are three things that you must do when preparing to move out:
- Advise us in writing that you will be moving out by completing our Vacancy Advice Form
- Contact your Managing Agent to schedule the end of tenancy inspection and return of keys
- Clean the property and arrange any work needed to return the property to the same condition as when you moved in. Please refer to our Vacating Checklist in your Tenant Handbook for things to consider before vacating the property.
Please be aware you must give 21 days’ notice in writing to end the agreement after the fixed term of your Residential Tenancy Agreement has expired. If the fixed term is due to expire, you can give 14 days’ written notice that you will be vacating on or after the expiry date. If you need to move out urgently, for a short notice employment transfer for example, we may reduce the notice period. Please contact your Tenancy Services Officer on 1300 137 343 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss your situation. Once we receive your Vacating Advice Form, we will confirm your vacating date in writing and provide you with information about finalising your tenancy.
• Your keys must be returned to your Agent’s office. Please factor in travel to the Agent’s office during business hours in your vacating plans. Leaving keys with your flatmate, neighbour or principal is not an acceptable way to end your tenancy, unless previously arranged with Housing Services or your Managing Agent.
• Rent is chargeable to the end of your required notice period. Keys must be returned on or before your vacating date, or rent will be charged until the date your keys are received by your Agent.
• Please remember to disconnect your utilities and re-direct your mail to your new address.
If you wish to have the Rental Bond that you paid at the beginning of your tenancy refunded directly to your bank account, please email your account details to email@example.com, or contact your Tenancy Services Officer on 1300 137 343.
How long will it take Teacher Housing Authority to return my bond once I leave my accommodation?
At the end of your tenancy, your bond will be returned to you within 30 days if there is no tenant charge for unpaid rent, cleaning or remedial work. You will be notified in writing by the Rental Bond Board and by Teacher Housing Authority if a claim is pending. You have 14 days to dispute the claim on your bond. Rental Bonds are refunded through the Rental Bond Board as either a direct bank deposit or as a cheque forwarded by mail to your new address. Please contact Housing Services firstname.lastname@example.org with your bank account details if you would like your bond to be refunded directly to your account.