The specialist homelessness services 2017-18 web report

The specialist homelessness services 2017-18 web report is the seventh annual report from the Specialist Homelessness Services Collection (SHSC).

Specialist homelessness agencies provide a range of services to assist those who are experiencing homelessness or who are at risk of homelessness. These services range from immediate crisis accommodation to general support and assistance. Characteristics of all clients assisted by specialist homelessness services (SHS) in 2017–18 are described below, including their needs for assistance and the services they received, and key trends for the 5 years from 2013–14 to 2017–18.

Key findings in 2017–18

  • In 2017–18, almost 288,800 clients sought assistance from SHS agencies, equating to 117.4 clients per 10,000 population.

  • Upon first presentation, most clients seeking assistance were housed but at risk of homelessness (57%); of these, most were living in private or other housing (62% or 89,000) or public or community housing at the time (24% or 34,000).

  • A high proportion of clients at risk of homelessness had experienced domestic and family violence (41%).

  • More than half (54%) had received SHS assistance at some point in the previous 5 years.

  • Less than 1 in 3 clients (29%) received accommodation in 2017–18 and the median length of accommodation was 32 nights.

  • Four in 10 clients were homeless on presentation to a SHS agency. Of these, agencies assisted about 38% into housing, most into private or other housing (about 15,500) and a further 10,500 into public or community housing.

  • SHS agencies assisted more than 8 in 10 clients who were in private or other housing (84% or 55,800 clients) and public or community housing (85% or 21,400 clients) at the beginning of support to maintain their tenancy at the end of support.

  • The average amount of financial assistance provided totalled $794 per client, up from $640 in 2016–17 (not adjusted for inflation).

Info graphs

Interactive data visualisation

data tables


Specialist-homelessness-services-annual-report-201718.pdf Specialist-homelessness-services-annual-report-201718.pdf (5MB)