Moving out of a Service Residence

Policy relating to Service Residences (SR) is determined by the Department of Defence and is outlined on the ADF Pay and Conditions site.

Posting within Australia

Log into Online Services and select the 'Have you been posted?' banner to advise the date you will move out of your current SR. At the same time, you will be able to enter the date you will require a home in the new posting location.

Self-funded move and require DHA to assist with a new housing solution

Submit an enquiry via Online Servicess to advise the date you are moving, why you are moving and when you will need your new housing solution.

Self funded move and do not require DHA to provide a new housing solution

If you will not require DHA's assistance to provide another housing solution, complete the Service Residence Clearance form (PDF 108 KB) and submit it in Online Services. For example, you would complete this form if you are moving to your own home; relocation as a Defence Civilian, you are Foreign Defence Exchange personnel or Philanthropic personnel' or you are going on an overseas posting.

If you are no longer posting, please advise us by submitting an enquiry via Online Services.

We will cancel your vacate and any inspections that have been booked and you will be able to continue living in your SR.

Once you discharge from the ADF, your eligibility for a housing benefit ends on the date of your discharge. You are required to vacate the SR on or before your discharge date.

You should be given sufficient notice by Defence to arrange housing and a removal prior to your discharge date. As soon as you are aware that a discharge may occur it is best to advise DHA and TOLL so they can advise what your options are.

You can apply to remain in the SR after discharge. Please be aware however that eligibility is not automatic and will need to be approved by DHA. This determination will be based on the SR's available and the incoming members requiring a SR.  If approved, full market rent must be paid in advance and bond may also be payable in advance.

Such requests need to be made by submitting a Tenancy after discharge request form (PDF 490KB) at least 28 days prior to the discharge date. Submit completed forms in an Online Enquiry via Online Services.

Upon the discharge of the senior serving member, the SR is transferred to the remaining serving member’s name and it is treated as a new tenancy. Contributions will apply based on the GRE of the remaining member.

To learn more about contributions, visit ADF Pay and Conditions.

When you vacate your Service Residence you must ensure it is cleaned to the required standard as outlined in your DRA and Tenant Handbook (PDF 1.6 MB). A general checklist is provided to you in your Tenant Handbook.   

During your pre vacation inspection your Property Manager will be able to give you more details and answer any questions about cleaning.

The final internal/external clean charge will show as a potential tenant charge until we can determine the final reason for relocation. If you are entitled to a Commonwealth funded removal, Toll will advise us of these details and the charge will be removed when this is confirmed.


If you are relocating at your own expense you may not be entitled to a Defence funded clean. If you have any concerns or questions please discuss with your Property Manager at the time of your Pre-vacation Inspection.

A pre-vacation inspection (PVI) occurs prior to you moving out. Your Regional office will contact you to arrange a suitable time. It is a requirement that the Defence member is present at the PVI. This is so you understand the cleaning requirements for your property and the potential tenant charges.


If you are unable to attend a scheduled inspection at your property, you may appoint someone to attend on your behalf. This person may be your spouse, partner or a representative. Agents can be appointed under 'Your current tenancy details' or 'My Account' in Online Services.


At your PVI, your Property Manager will:


  • Discuss your cleaning requirements
    • Before you vacate your property, you must ensure it is cleaned to the required standard. View the Cleaning Checklist (PDF 216 KB).
    • After you move out, carpets will be professionally steam-cleaned and a final cleaning and maintenance check will be carried out. Carpet cleaning charges will be deducted from your Defence salary. For discharging or resigning members, carpet cleaning and non-fair wear-and-tear charges will be deducted from your final discharge pay.

  • Explain the operation of the lock box
    • On the day you move out of your property, you will be asked to place the keys in the lock box.

  • Identify non-fair wear-and-tear
    • You will be responsible for repairing any damage to the property as a result of non-fair wear-and-tear. Read about how we define non-fair wear-and-tear and the standards of repair required.
    • If you choose to have the repairs carried out by a DHA contractor, the cost of the repairs will be identified as a ‘tenant charge’ on the Inspection Condition Report (ICR).

  • Complete the Inspection Condition Report (ICR) with you
    • The ICR identifies any carpet cleaning charges, your responsibilities when vacating the Service Residence and any potential and/or tenant charges you may be responsible for.
    • By signing the ICR you are acknowledging that all noted charges and information is correct. If you dispute some charges, this will be noted on the ICR as a Tenant Dispute. Request a Details of Dispute form from your Property Manager. You will need to submit this form to your local RO within five working days.

  • Address any concerns you may have with vacating the property
    • Please take this opportunity to raise any concerns you may have.
  • You will be required to complete the Pre-vacation Inspection (PVI) process.
  • You are responsible for cleaning the property to the same standard of a Commonwealth funded clean.
  • You will incur a charge for the cost of carpet cleaning.
  • You may be charged for repairs and/or additional cleaning as a result of non-fair wear-and-tear.

At the end of your tenancy carpet cleaning is automatically deducted from your salary.

You may also incur charges for property damage from mistreatment or neglect (including pet damage) which is considered non-fair wear-and-tear. These charges will be on your Pre-vacation Inspection report and Tenant acknowledgement Form (TAF).

When you vacate your Service Residence, we will arrange for carpet cleaning on your behalf. When you sign your DHA Residence Agreement at your welcome visit, you accept that the cost of carpet cleaning will be deducted from your salary. If you have any questions regarding this please contact your property manager.

If you do not agree with non-fair wear-and-tear charges identified at your periodic inspection, Pre-vacation Inspection, or at a second/final inspection, you have the option to dispute the charge.

At your inspection we will ask you to mark-up and sign the Tenant Acknowledgment Form (TAF) and complete a Details of Dispute form, clearly outlining your reasons for disputing the charges. You must complete the dispute form and submit it to your local regional office within five working days. Your reasons must be valid and relevant to your dispute.

The dispute will be investigated by DHA and your regional Defence Relocations Housing Manager. Once the investigation is complete you will be advised of the result. When the dispute process has been finalised and the charges stand, , the charge will be deducted from your salary or an invoice will be issued for payment within 30 days, as selected on the TAF.

If the removals contractor causes any damage to the residence or its surroundings, it must be recorded on the contractors inventory form before they leave the property; you should also request a copy for yourself.

The damage must then be reported to Toll Transitions immediately on 1800 819 167 (who will issue you with a reference number). You are also required to advise DHA on 139 342 or by submitting an Online Enquiry via ‘My Account’ in Online Services.

You must ensure that:

  • You continue to water all gardens and lawns until the day of uplift, subject to local water restrictions
  • All garden beds, lawns and paths are weed free
  • Shrubs and trees are trimmed back from the house, gutters, clothesline and pathways (if required)
  • Lawns are mowed and the edges trimmed
  • Garden clippings and house-hold rubbish are removed
  • Wet grease and oil stains are to be cleaned off the driveway and parking areas
  • Arrangements are made for the collection of any skips and trash packs etc
  • Rubbish is removed and the bins are cleaned and secured in the garage or garden shed
  • The residence and grounds are free from pest infestations stemming from pets
  • The garage is swept out, and
  • You clean all gutters that can be reached with a standard 1.8 metre step ladder (contact your local regional office for assistance with high set gutters).
  • Clean all mould from windows, sliding doors, window and door tracks, blinds, pergolas and fences
  • Pressure clean all staining and dirt from external paths, driveways (take care if painted), fences and patio slabs.
You are required to:
  • Vacuum all carpeted floor areas
  • Sweep and mop any non-carpeted floors
  • Remove all rubbish from the Service Residence and surrounding grounds
  • Clean heating and cooling filters
  • Replace all blown light globes, and
  • Replace batteries in smoke detectors and all remotes.

You do not need to re-clean the floors after your uplift.

Wet areas

As close as possible to your uplift, you are required to clean all wet areas thoroughly, removing mildew and soap scum. On the day of uplift you must ensure that the toilet and shower areas are clean.


You are required to remove food residue and grease from sinks, splashbacks and bench tops. The hot plates, oven, grill, range hood and filters must be cleaned before uplift to remove all burnt on deposits and grease. Place sink plugs under the sink to ensure they are not packed at uplift.

The Pre-vacation Inspection cleaning standard is intended to be a reasonable starting point for us to prepare the property for the next tenant. Your Property Manager is available to discuss these cleaning standards with you at any time.

It’s important to know that when you’re relocating at your own expense as a Defence tenant you are not eligible for a Defence funded clean when vacating an SR and you are responsible for cleaning the residence to the Defence standard. The above cleaning checklist is not to be used for own expense relocations.

If you have any concerns or questions please ensure to discuss these matters with your Property Manager at the time of your Pre-vacation Inspection or contact 139 342.

View the Self move cleaning checklist (PDF 79 KB) to assist in the requirements needed when you have decided to conduct a self-move.

Note: The Self move cleaning checklist is not to be used when conducting a government funded removal, please refer to the Tenant Handbook (PDF 1.4 MB) when this is occurring.

Couldn’t find the answer you were looking for?

If you need to get in contact with us, please submit an enquiry via Online Services. If you have an urgent enquiry, you can call us on 139 342.