Separately, accommodation is paid for via a refundable loan (paid by the resident), an equivalent daily payment (which is either covered by the government or the resident, depending on capacity to pay) or a combination of both.
There has been bipartisan support in Canberra to deregulate the accommodation part of the equation.
While the amount that can be charged for accommodation has a regulator to monitor pricing levels, residents can agree to pay extra for higher standards of food or services; a glass of wine in the evening or massage therapy, for example.
Some providers have added levies of up to $18 a day for building maintenance and building replacement.
But last Friday the department said these charges should be included into the base accommodation pricing – they could not be charged as "added extras".