Emergency housing

Emergency housing in the City of Merri-bek

COVID-19 Update

Emergency housing and homelessness

 The Victorian Government is supporting housing and homelessness services to provide community members with safe shelter during the pandemic. This support includes financial assistance for staying in short-term accommodation such as motels and assistance to establish private rental tenancies. For assistance, contact:

  • VincentCare Victoria Northern Community Hub in Glenroy on 9304 0100, or
  • Phone 1800 825 955 (24 hours) to speak with a housing and support worker. This number directs your call to a service closest to you, or if the call is outside business hours, it is directed to Salvation Army Crisis Services.

Rent Relief Grant 

The Victorian Government has established a rental assistance fund to provide payments of up to $3000 to Victorians experiencing rental hardship due to the coronavirus pandemic. These grants are aimed at helping Victorian renters maintain safe, secure and stable accommodation.

There are no citizenship or permanent residency requirements for applicants. This includes casual workers on holiday and working visas, skilled visas, seasonal workers, New Zealand citizens and all refugee and temporary protection visa holders.

To find out more about eligibility and how to apply, see Housing Victoria

To seek information and basic advice, see Tenants Victoria

Residential Tenancies Act change

New temporary laws have been put in place to protect Victorian tenants, landlords and the rental market from the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Tenants and landlords must comply with the Residential Tenancies Act 1997 and the COVID-19 Omnibus (Emergency Measures) Act 2020. The new laws apply  from 29 March 2020 and will continue until 28 March 2021.

These changes include:

  • changes to evictions, including a ban on notices to vacate
  • a ban on rent increases
  • changes to when tenants can move out
  • changes to tenants’ obligations, if related to COVID-19
  • restrictions on tenant database listing, if related to COVID-19
  • new protections for victim-survivors of family violence
  • a new dispute resolution process for tenants and landlords.

For more information, see Consumer Affairs Victoria

For support, legal advice and fact sheets in multiple languages, see Northern Community Legal Centre, call (03) 9310 4376 or email admin@nclc.org.au

Other options

Housing Victoria is the State Government website with information about housing options and assistance in Victoria.