Applying for NDIS ILO funding

An ILO is usually funded in two stages – Exploration and Design; and ILO Support

Image description: Caragh happy in her home

How Does the Funding Work?

Image description: ILO Pathway Infographic

The NDIS will require you to have a goal about living independently, or exploring ways you can change your current living arrangements. All NDIS funding must be tied to a goal. If you are having difficulty thinking about how to word your goal, we have developed some examples that you can adapt to suit your needs.

Now that you have come up with your vision under First Steps, and decided on an NDIS goal for home, you should be ready to start the process of exploring and designing the right package of supports to make your vision a reality.

Your ILO package only describes the supports you need in your own home.

If you choose to use an ILO package to support you at home, you can still access other NDIS-funded supports such as:

  • Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA)
  • Home Modifications
  • Assistive Technology
  • Community Access supports
  • Employment supports
  • Therapy and other Capacity Building Supports

These are funded separately to your ILO package in your NDIS plan.

When the NDIS agrees to fund your ILO support package, it will appear as a “Stated” line item in your Core Support budget in your NDIS plan.

My Quote Required Stated Supports will be:

  • NDIA-managed
  • Individual Living Options – support model

An ILO is usually funded in two stages.

Exploration and Design (Stage 1)

This is where you work through the process of deciding the structure of an ILO that will work best for you, leading to the development and submission of an ILO Service Proposal. The NDIS will require evidence about how and why you have decided on the eventual ILO support model and the expected annual cost.

You can ask family, friends, your Circle of Support or Microboard to help you through this process. You can also use your NDIS funding to pay for someone to assist you through this process. The NDIS will provide Exploration & Design funding between $3,000 – $10,000 for you to pay for assistance with designing your ILO, depending on your individual circumstances.

ILO Support (Stage 2)

Once the NDIS has agreed to fund your ILO, you can implement the supports and services that will meet your needs. This stage also includes provision for monitoring and adjustment of your supports in recognition that your needs will change and possibly fluctuate over time.

ILO Support packages will typically range between $105,000 – $230,000 annually.

You can choose to manage your ILO funding in the same way you choose for other supports in your NDIS plan. Whichever option you choose will apply to your whole ILO budget. You cannot have some of your  ILO self-managed and some of it agency managed.

Deciding how to manage your ILO funding:


Self-Managed – gives you the most flexibility. Your annual ILO package will be divided into weekly payments that are paid directly into your NDIS nominated bank account so you can pay for your supports flexibly as required. You can choose mainstream providers or NDIS-registered providers to meet your support needs. You can self-employ your team and pay a payroll service to manage the payments etc. You will be responsible for keeping detailed records including receipts and invoices in case of future audits.

The NDIS may refuse your request to self-manage your ILO funding, if your Host is also your NDIS Nominee. This can be seen as a conflict of interest and is best managed by choosing Plan Management which allows you similar flexibility but places an intermediary for overseeing and paying the bills (then you won’t be paying yourself directly).

Plan Managed

Plan Managed – you can still choose mainstream or NDIS registered providers, however, all your invoices need to be submitted to an NDIS registered Plan Manager (like an accountant) who will claim from your ILO package to pay the invoices. The Plan Manager will keep all receipts and will let you know how your spending is tracking against your budget. Your Plan Manager is paid a monthly fee from your NDIS plan, however, this isn’t taken out of your ILO budget, it is added to your plan when you choose this option at your plan review meeting.

Agency Managed

Agency Managed – your ILO supports can only be provided by NDIS-registered ILO providers. It is advisable that you choose an ILO provider who is willing to broker other supports and services as part of your ILO package, rather than trying to provide all the supports and services in-house. This will give you the most flexibility and will be a more efficient use of ILO funding. The ILO provider is paid weekly in order to flexibly respond to your evolving support needs.

If you choose Agency Managed for your ILO, it is important to choose the right ILO provider who understands your vision and will give you the flexibility you need. You should choose this provider before you write your Service Proposal as they will be involved in developing the costs with you. You do not want to underestimate the cost of services and once the ILO has been approved the provider declines to provide the service as it is not viable financially.

Questions we recommend asking a potential ILO provider:

There are a multiple number of NDIS service providers, and it is important to find out how they will support you to achieve your vision and goals. You are looking for service providers who are respectful and transparent in their communications, understand your vision and needs and place you at the centre of all decision-making.


  • How will you involve me in decision-making?
  • How will you report to me on things such as costs, implementation?
    What do you understand about my vision?
  • How will you support me to maintain my vision at the centre of my supports?
  • How involved will I be in choosing my supports and staff?
  • Do you subcontract or broker services that your agency does not provide directly? i.e. gardening, accounting etc.
  • How often will you monitor the arrangement and what is your expected monitoring process?
  • How can I give feedback about what is and isn’t working?
  • How will you give me and my supporters feedback about what is and isn’t working?
  • What sort of documentation will you retain for the NDIS?
  • What are your costs?
  • What sort of out-of-hours or on-call system do you have in case of emergencies or problems outside usual business hours?

Need Support With ILO?

NACBO have dedicated staff available across Australia who can assist you through the various stages of this process.

Click ‘Get Support’ to find your nearest contact.

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