Seventy per cent more Victorian women have sought housing help because of domestic violence over just four years.
The number of Victorian women seeking homelessness assistance because of family violence has risen 70 per cent in four years, new data has revealed.
As Victorians go to the polls to choose the government for the next four years, the state's peak body for homelessness has released the alarming statistic in a desperate call for more social housing.
"We've had a tidal wave of new people needing help, but we haven't seen a tidal wave of low-cost housing or funding," Council of Homeless Persons chief executive Jenny Smith said.
The statistics come from the Specialist Homelessness Services Annual Report 2016-17 published by federal government body, the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.
In 2016-17, the data shows that 25,755 women aged 15 and above approached homelessness services because of family violence.
In 2012-13 this number was 15,090 - an increase of more than 10,000 people.
The Council of Homeless Persons says the shocking rise is due to increased reporting of family violence and a shortage of affordable housing.
Council chief Ms Smith said a recent DHHS rent report indicated just three per cent of all two-bedroom homes in Melbourne were affordable for a single mother on a low income.
"More housing for people on the lowest incomes, including women fleeing violence, must be the first point of order for the new state government," she said.
Of the 25,755 Victorian women who sought accommodation in 2016-17, around 75 per cent of those were able to be permanently housed, or to have their existing tenancies saved if they were at risk of homelessness, the council said.
But more than 6,000 of the 25,755 ended up in crisis accommodation, shelters, motels or couchsurfing.
In some cases, they slept rough after seeking help.
Ms Smith said homelessness agencies used "tenacity and wits" to find homes for women and children victims of domestic violence in a private housing market that had nothing for them.
"Workers are brokering deals with real estate agents, advocating for urgent clients to be prioritised up the social housing wait list and providing short-term loans to help women pay the rent after they've made the brave decision to banish a partner from the home," she said.
The council's calls also come ahead of the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on Sunday.