Frequently Asked Questions
Can anyone apply to become a resident?
Anyone can apply. However, only eligible applicants will be accepted. To be eligible, applicants need to be in receipt of an Age Pension, Commonwealth Health Care Card, and Supplementary Rent Assistance. An asset test, which includes superannuation, applies. Approved applicants will be in receipt of the Age Pension and able to show genuine need for low-cost rental accommodation. Other criteria may also apply. If you are currently eligible, or will be in the future, you may apply now to be placed on our waiting list.
What steps are involved in applying?
Firstly, please register your interest by completing the online Registration of Interest Form.
Names are kept on our waiting list and when a vacancy arises applicants will be contacted to discuss the next steps that will include a formal application.
How long is the waitlist?
The Cottage Homes residents often stay for many years until they are no longer able to live independently. This means that units may not become available very often. We encourage you to register your interest and get your name on the waiting list as waiting list times can vary.
Can I ask for a preferred location?
The Cottage Homes has 7 locations in the Adelaide metropolitan area. Applicants may request a preferred location to maintain proximity to their support network and familiar services including medical. Nominating a preferred location may result in longer wait-list times.
What does ‘living independently’ mean?
The Cottage Homes provides single units where people can live comfortably and care for themselves either fully or with the limited assistance of others such as Home Care providers. While Cottage Homes does not provide care for its residents, there is a team of Volunteers whose role it is to check on the welfare of residents generally and to see that The Cottage Homes’ community is operating effectively. It is an expectation that each resident be willing to live peacefully and cooperatively within the community setting.
What is the cost of rent?
The Cottage Homes rents are set and maintained at a level that is considered manageable for older people with low incomes. Rent is collected by direct debit on a 4-weekly cycle, in advance. The rent is reviewed twice a year. Rent is set by The Cottage Homes Board, taking into consideration the pension and other government assistance payments.
Is there a bond and what other costs are involved?
There is no bond, but there is a one-off non-refundable administration fee of $400 payable once you are offered and accept a Cottage Homes residence. Residents need to connect their own electricity and gas, and if desired connect their own internet/NBN account. Residents are also responsible for providing and maintaining their own whitegoods, curtains/blinds and all loose furniture.
What services do The Cottage Homes provide?
Residing in a Cottage Home is similar to other residential rental accommodation. The Cottage Homes provides maintenance to fixed/inbuilt items, such as the hot water service, kitchen cupboards, roof, taps, doors and locks. As water use is allowed for within the weekly rental, there is no additional costs for water use. Basic garden maintenance like lawn mowing is undertaken by The Cottage Homes, but residents are encouraged to assist where possible with gardening.
Are there air-conditioners in the units?
The Cottage Homes does not provide air-conditioning or heating. Residents can apply to install air conditioning at their own cost, however approval is at the discretion of The Cottage Homes and all costs of installation and ongoing maintenance are the responsibility of the resident. When a resident vacates, The Cottage Homes may request that the air conditioning unit be removed, and the area where the unit was installed repaired back to the original condition (made good) at the cost of the vacating resident. However, it is more than likely that the air-conditioner will be left in place.
What is the role of Volunteer Visitors?
Each Cottage Homes location has allocated 2-3 volunteers who visit each month to check in with residents. It is their role to see if there are any issues for which residents may need assistance. The Visitors also conduct the final interview for potential residents prior to moving into a Cottage Homes community.
What is the role of the Guarantor?
The Cottage Homes does not provide any health or welfare services to tenants. Prior to being approved as a Cottages Homes resident, contact details must be provided of two people who will guarantee to care for resident if they are no longer able to live independently. Should the need arise, the Guarantors must ensure that the resident goes to hospital or to other accommodation. When a resident vacates their unit, the Guarantors may be expected to clean the Cottage Home unit if the exiting resident is unable to perform this obligation.
Is The Cottage Homes Inc part of a church or government organisation?
The Cottage Homes is an independent organisation, providing affordable rental accommodation to older South Australians since 1872. The organisation is not affiliated with any religious or government group.