NDIS SDA (Specialist Disability Accommodation)

NDIS SDA (Specialist Disability Accommodation)


All dwellings proposed for New Build SDA enrolment post 1 July 2021 arer equired to provide Certification by an Accredited SDA Assessor at BOTH Design stage and at Final-as-built Stage. Compliance is required with the provisions of Edition 1.1 of the NDIS SDA Design Standard based on the particular design category. NDIA have been accepting enrolments through this new process since 30 April 2020. A dwelling can be enrolled under multiple design categories.

At Design Stage – The drawings and specifications are required to clearly show ALL requirements as noted in the particular design category in the SDA Design Standard. There are no concessions available for any non-compliances, so it is essential that the Architect allows for construction tolerances.

At Final-as-built Stage – The built dwelling is required to fully comply with the requirements of SDA Design Standard. In addition to full compliance required for spatial requirements at a site inspection, the applicant will also need to provide the following documentation (based on the Design category).

  • Letter from Builder to confirm slip resistance, wall reinforcements, use of resilient materials, carpet specifications, zoning of air-conditioning systems, provision of internet connections and wifi coverage.
  • Emergency evacuation plans with areas of retreat.
  • Certification from a Structural Engineer for suitability of structure for ceiling hoists.
  • Certification from lift supplier for NCC compliance.
  • Certification from an electrician to confirm required emergency power solutions.
  • Occupation Certificate / Certificate of completion.

Note that the SDA Assessor is not required to provide advice on Building classification, or any advice on funding of SDA. The Architect of the project is not permitted to be the SDA Assessor of the project at any stage of works due to conflict of interest.

The following is the SDA Assessment process for dwellings POST 1 July 2021

An SDA dwelling is required to be certified to a particular Design Category at two stages (both mandatory):

  1. Provisional - Design Certification and

  2. Final-as-built Certification

The Design certification is called ‘Provisional’ as the dwelling has not been built at this stage. Only a built dwelling can get a Final certification suitable for NDIS SDA enrolment.

Farah Madon of Vista Access Architects being the lead author of the SDA Design Standard is well placed to assist with the assessment and certification requirements of SDA developments. Once engaged for our services, we provide assessment and certification based on the 12 Steps noted below.

Steps 01 to 07 (shown in yellow) note the procedure involved to assess and certify the drawings and documents for Provisional- Design Certification stage. Steps 08 to 12 (shown in aqua) note the procedure involved to assess and certify the constructed dwelling for Final-as-built Certification stage.

To learn more about the NDIS SDA density restrictions see our BLOG and SDA Density CALCULATOR


Download a copy of must read documents from the links below

SDA Design Standard Download    SDA Implementation plan NDIS Rules 2020
Price Guide 2020  Clarifications

Important Information for SDA Investors LINK TO NDIA WEBSITE
SDA Pricing Arrangements and Price Limits (Previously noted as Price Guide) 2023-24 LINK TO NDIA WEBSITE


Some of our Clients for whom we have provided SDA/LHA Certification services:

• Achieve Australia • Forsight Australia • Kirinari Community ServicesLtd
• BlueCHP • Habilis Housing Limited • SDA Housing Australia
• Bridge Housing • Home 4 Life • Seton Villa
• Civic Disability Services • Home Caring Australia • Summer Housing
• Dream Care Community • Independent Living Villages • Sunrise Disability Accommodation
• Enliven Housing • Liveable Home Builders • Westhaven Limited
• Westbury Constructions • MAAS Projects • BaptistCare
• Urban Growh NSW • Lendlease • Stockland
• Evolve Housing • Link Housing • Inala Disability Services
• ANSA Homes • SDA Property Unit Trust • ALAND
• Mirvac • Hotondo Homes • Currajong Disability Services
• NASR Group • Catholiccare • HCM Group