The NDIS funding balance cannot be carried forward if you do not use the funds in your plan within a year. Having a funding balance at the end of the year also means you possibly missed out on some essential services. Therefore, as an NDIS participant, consider planning your budget to cover every coin the NDIS provides. Even as the cost of items and services increases, there are ways you can navigate to utilise your NDIS funds fully. Here are six things you should do to ensure your NDIS funds cover your supports while getting value from your budget.
Table of Contents
Extending your Budgeting through the Plan
Budgeting is critical for managing NDIS funds. After the approval of your plan, the NDIS will disburse funds to cover your support during the year. Therefore, consider spreading your expenditure to cover the plan entirely. Create a weekly or monthly expenditure plan to show how much you will spend clearly.
Find Providers with Lower Rates
The NDIS pricing arrangements and price limits specify the price limits for supports that providers must not exceed. Therefore, consider finding a provider offering lower rates or negotiating with your provider about the same. When negotiating for lower rates, ensure that the provider does not charge you more than they would charge another person.
Manage your Plan or Find a Plan Manager
Self-management and plan management slightly share the same characteristics because participants can choose providers per their preferences. Thus, you can choose between registered or unregistered providers, giving you more options. Unfortunately, agency NDIS fund management allows participants to receive support from NDIS-registered providers.
Consider Low-Price Non-Direct Supports
Service providers differ. Some may charge different or similar amounts for non-direct supports. So first, assess the service agreements to check if non-direct supports like travel and admin are chargeable per hour like other support work. Luckily, service providers are more than willing to provide non-direct supports at lower rates than direct supports.
Consider Low-Cost Consumables and Assistive Technology
Support providers charge differently for assistive technology and consumables. Therefore, it is necessary to compare prices to pick a more favourable option. Self and plan-managed NDIS participants can shop for the best offers online and in physical stores. Some providers also offer seasonal sales for assistive technology. Buying consumables in bulk also presents bigger discounts which maximise NDIS fund management.
Issue Cancellation Notices on Time
When cancelling or postponing an appointment, give notice promptly as stipulated in the service agreement. A participant should give notice within seven days to avoid paying for short-notice cancellations. Service providers can bill you for the entire appointment if you give a cancellation notice later.
Join an NDIS Participants’ Group
Finding individuals with similar situations is also ideal for solving problems you may have with accessing supports. Learn from others about maximising NDIS funds and identify areas you can implement. In addition, group or centre-based supports cost lower than individual supports since the costs are divided depending on the number of participants.
With these tips, you can relax knowing that you have full financial cover for the year without stretching your budget or under budgeting. A plan manager can guide you in accessing affordable services and planning your budget to cover essential services and supports.