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Choosing which retirement village to move into is an important decision, and one for which you should always seek legal advice. Each retirement village can vary in the offerings to residents. Some retirement villages offer opportunities to transition into serviced apartments, or into aged care facilities that have medical support. The decision to move into a retirement village needs to be made carefully, which is why we’ve put together this blog. Today, we’re looking at five things that you should consider when choosing your retirement village. When moving to a retirement village, you are often purchasing the right to occupy the unit, villa or apartment for your lifetime rather than time purchasing the unit, villa or apartment itself. You will be required to enter into an occupation rights agreement with the village, which sets out the rights and obligations of the resident and the village.

1. Facilities available 

As previously mentioned, the facilities offered by different retirement villages can vary. One of the primary things you should be considering is whether the retirement facility has facilities that you may require now and in the future. Does the village allow for extra services to be provided to you in your unit/apartment/villa such as cleaning, provision of meals and assistance with day-to-day living? Does the village offer serviced units/apartments, rest home level care or hospital level care available, so if you require this level of care you do not have to move elsewhere.

 2. Social activities

The presence of social activities at the village is a very important factor to look for. Many villages have social activities for the residents such as walking groups, crafts, bowls or a choir, Any village that you choose should have ways to engage with other residents in the village.

3. Location convenience

You should consider how close the village is to your family, friends and any local attractions and amenities. Being close to shops, supermarkets, transport and other local amenities can be an important factor to consider when choosing a village.

4. Cost

There are a few costs to consider when choosing a retirement village for yourself.

First you must consider the purchase price of the occupation rights agreement. The purchase price can vary dramatically between villages. There is also usually an additional weekly fee you are required to pay that covers the management and maintenance costs of the village, such as grounds keeping, maintenance of common areas, insurance and rates for the village. You will also be responsible to pay for your own utilities and contents insurance. Finally, there is the matter of deferred management fees. On termination of your right to live at the village, you are entitled to receive a refund of your original purchase price. However, it is important to know that a deferred management fee is deducted from the original purchase price by the village on termination of your right to live there. The deferred management fee is a lump sum and usually varies between 20% and 30% of the original purchase price. The deferred management fee can be used by the village to cover various things. For example the refurbishment of your unit after you leave, marketing the legal fees used to relicense your unit and or maintenance of village communal areas.

5. Capital gains 

Something that not many people know, is that there are a few villages that allow you to share in any capital gain between the purchase price and the sale price on termination of your occupation rights agreement. However, the majority of villages do not allow you to share in any capital gain. Therefore, in most cases you are likely to receive an amount significantly less than your original purchase price when the agreement is terminated.


What else do you need to know?

There are many factors you need to consider when choosing a retirement village.

Thankfully, you don’t need to consider these factors alone. The complicated nature of entering a relationship with a retirement home is why it’s a legal requirement to engage a professional. For the best specialty lawyers wellington has, talk to the team at Gillespie Young Watson today.