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News: Streamlining Minor Home Modifications

The NDIA recently announced changes designed to simplify the process for accessing minor, non-structural home modifications.

By Sara Gingold

Updated 15 Apr 20244 Oct 2022

Home modifications have always been a complicated and highly technical area of the NDIS, which can be rather intimidating. So, it’s probably good news that the NDIA recently announced the following changes to streamline the process for people seeking minor, non-structural home modifications:

  • People seeking minor home modifications will no longer be required to get 1 quote from a builder
  • Providers will be given a Practical Completion payment code so that participants can hold back at least 10% of the final payment until the work is satisfactorily completed

What is a minor home modification?

According to the NDIS Operational Guidelines, home modifications are minor if they are:

  • Straightforward and non-structural changes that don’t alter any of the supporting structures of the house
  • Relatively low risk
  • Affect only 1 or 2 areas of the home
  • Cost less than $20,000

People no longer need to obtain quotes for minor home modifications. These supports will be funded based on market prices in the person’s local area. Basically, minor home modifications now have their own Price Guide, which you can find here. However, the NDIA has said that in remote areas, they may still request quotes to set prices at the right level.

Just to make things a bit more complicated, minor home modifications are then divided into two further categories:

  • Category A: Modifications that cost less than $10,000
  • Category B: Modifications that cost between $10,000–$20,000

People wanting to access minor home modifications need to provide:

  • A home modification assessment using the Minor home modifications assessment template. For Category A modifications, this can be completed by an Occupational Therapist (OT). Whereas for Category B modifications, this must be completed by a home modification assessor, an OT qualified to make detailed home modification recommendations)
  • Permission from the property owner and relevant responsible bodies (e.g. bodies corporate)
  • Evidence that the support is reasonable and necessary

What about complex home modifications?

Complex home modifications are of higher risk and higher cost. They have a more intensive approval process that has not changed with the recent announcements.

People wanting complex home modifications will still need to provide the following:

  • An assessment using the Complex home modifications assessment template
  • completed by a home modifications assessor
  • Two quotes
  • Other relevant reports and documents (e.g. reports from a building construction
  • practitioner or a building works project manager)
  • Permission from the property owner and relevant responsible bodies (e.g. bodies
  • corporate)
  • Evidence that the support is reasonable and necessary

If you want to learn more, we recommend checking out this explainer page and the Home Modifications Operational Guidelines (though keep in mind that these guidelines were last updated in early August 2022 – before the most recent announcement). You can also read the NDIA’s press release here.

Authors

Sara Gingold

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