What Is Specialist Disability Accomodation (SDA)?

Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) is a range of housing designed for people with extreme functional impairment or very high needs.

It aims to make accessing support easier and usually involves a shared home with a small number of other people.

However, you might also be able to live in SDA by yourself, if that option best meets your needs and circumstances.

SDA funding includes the cost of the home or building you live in, and usually, you'll still need to pay rent or other personal costs to live in SDA.

SDA doesn’t include the services or support you might get in your home.

SDA Eligibility

People who live in SDA have extremely high needs and need to live in very specialised homes, usually with high levels of person-to-person support. 

If you have a home and living goal, the NDIS will help you explore your options to pursue this goal.


For more information on the NDIS guidelines, visit this website.


SDA Design Standard

The SDA Design Standard is a detailed set of requirements for all new specialist disability accommodation that covers 4 categories of SDA design:

  • improved liveability 
  • robust construction
  • fully accessible 
  • high physical support.

In addition to the Design Standard, SDA must also comply with Australian National Construction Code.

These combined requirements are in place to ensure that you can safely access high quality, well maintained SDA that meets your needs.

For more information visit the NDIS website, here.


Finding SDA

If you’re looking for specialist disability accommodation, you can search for vacancies using the SDA Finder on the NDIS website.

The SDA Finder is an interactive tool created and maintained by the NDIS to help you find accommodation to meet your needs. 

You can find a vacancy by searching with multiple filtering options, including location, building type and maximum price per person per year.

Search results include more information about the SDA vacancy and contact details for the SDA provider. 


What Other Options are Available?

If the NDIS does not recommend SDA for you or your loved one, there are a wide range of other housing options and support programs available to support you. These include:

Supported Independent Living (SIL)

Supported Independent Living (SIL) is a shared living experience for people with disability who have SIL funding in their NDIS plan.

Supports are often 24/7, nurturing personal growth in a safe and supportive environment with the goal to build your independence at home and connect you with your local community.

Individualised Living Options

Individual Living Options (ILO) are living arrangements that focus on the individual. They include Living Alone, Co-Residency, Host Arrangements and Living Together options. They are an alternative to group home services and the ILO design features include individual focussed supports.

Personal Care Supports

Personal care supports relate to assistance with daily personal activities including assistance with, or supervision of, personal tasks of daily life. These may include toileting, eating and drinking, attending appointments, mobility and transfers, the use of aids and appliances and much more.

These can be used whether you are living on your own, living with family or friends, going on holidays, getting involved with social events or being employed.

Home Modifications

Home modifications are custom-built changes to your home to help you access and use areas of your home.

Home modifications can be minor changes or they can be complex, such as changing the structure of your home, or the layout or fittings to ensure you can access and move around easily.

The NDIS will usually fund home modifications so long as they provide value for money, follow the Building Codes of Australia (BCA), and are reserved for participants with inaccessible homes or homes that adversely impact their care arrangements.

Different housing and living supports suit different people, so always speak with an NDIS coordinator to determine the best possible housing option for your needs.


At Lift-Ability, we want to make living at home easier, more comfortable and accessible for people with disabilities.

As a registered NDIS provider, we offer a wide range of solutions that make home modifications a simple process and very affordable — from ceiling hoists and track systems, to support rails and change tables, we stock the products to ensure you live safely and securely at home.

For enquiries, email admin@lift-ability.com.au