A large proportion of housing assistance to Indigenous households is provided through mainstream housing assistance programs, particularly Commonwealth Rent Assistance and public housing, although targeted Indigenous-specific programs also play an important role.

Indigenous households 6 times as likely to live in social housing

In 2013, Indigenous households were 6 times as likely as other Australian households to live in social housing (rates of 31% and 5%, respectively).

Public housing was the largest provider of social housing to Indigenous households, with about 30,800 Indigenous households living in such housing at 30 June 2013-a rate of 14% of Indigenous households.

Indigenous community housing was the second largest provider-8% of Indigenous households lived in such housing at 30 June 2013.

Available data suggest that almost 1 in 5 (18%) new allocations to social housing in 2012-13 were to Indigenous households.

About 1 in 4 Indigenous households received Commonwealth Rent Assistance

An estimated 24% of Indigenous households received Commonwealth Rent Assistance (CRA) at 14 June 2013; by comparison, an estimated 15% of other households received such assistance.

Between 2009 and 2013, the number of Indigenous CRA recipients rose by 48%, while the number of other CRA recipients rose by 21%.

In June 2013, 61% of Indigenous CRA recipients would have been in rental stress (that is, spending more than 30% of income on rent) if they had not received CRA. The availability of CRA halved this proportion (30%).

Indigenous households more than twice as likely to receive housing assistance

Available data suggest that in June 2013, Indigenous households were more than twice as likely as other households to have received support from at least one of the major housing assistance programs (that is, CRA and social housing programs). Between 43% and 46% of Indigenous households were estimated to have received such support, compared with 18% of other households.

Other assistance programs also important

Of all households that received private rent assistance in 2012-13, 10% were Indigenous.

In 2012-13, 664 new home loans were approved through the Indigenous Home Ownership Program, with the average value of the new loan being around $260,000. Between the program's inception in 1974 and 30 June 2013, a total of 15,798 home loans were provided through this program.

About 1 in 25 (4.2%) households living in homes made available through the National Rental Affordability Scheme from 1 May 2011 to 30 April 2012 were Indigenous.