With an aging population, an increasing number of Australians are opting to live in retirement villages. While pitched at the ‘over-55s’, the average age of entry is 75, and average age of residents is 81.
With an aging population, an increasing number of Australians are opting to live in retirement villages. While pitched at the ‘over-55s’, the average age of entry is 75, and average age of residents is 81. Depending on the retirement villages, attractions include having home maintenance issues taken care of, more social contact, access to recreational facilities and on call assistance in case of medical emergency. Moving to a retirement village can also free up capital to support living costs in retirement.
These benefits all come at a cost, of course, and the type and amount of fees can vary enormously from village to village. There are also several different types of ownership or occupation rights or ‘tenure’. Most commonly, residents pay the market price of a unit in exchange for a long-term lease, or pay an upfront fee for a licence to occupy. Straight rental arrangements, often for serviced apartment-style accommodation, are also available in some villages.
Lots of fees
While there are many ways in which retirement villages structure their fees, the most commonly encountered include:
On the other hand, when you leave the village you will receive the proceeds of selling your unit less any exit fees. However, depending on the prevailing market it can be many months before the final payment is received.
Some of these fees can better understood by way of an example.
John and Wendy’s experience
John and Wendy are in their late 70s when they decide to downsize from the family home. They are attracted to the retirement village lifestyle by the recreational facilities and social opportunities, plus the availability of personal care should they require it in the future.
This is just one simplified example, and even slightly different circumstances can lead to a very different result.
While it may seem a poor result for John and Wendy to pocket less than the purchase price after eight years, the decision to enter a retirement village is more about lifestyle and services rather than just about financial returns.
If your entry contribution is more than the extra allowable amount (the difference between non-home owner and home owner assets test threshold) Centrelink will classify you as a home owner. This applies to most people. Anyone assessed as a non-home owner may be eligible for rent assistance, with the amount based on the ongoing fees.
Moving house is a major and stressful life event at the best of times. With their varying fees and ownership structures, a move into a retirement village may be even more complicated. That’s no reason to dismiss the idea – many retirement village residents report an increase in their happiness as a result of making the move. However, entering a village has major financial consequences, so talk to your financial advisor about they assistance they may be able to offer you.
You need to consider with your financial planner (or adviser), your objectives, financial situation and your particular needs prior to making an investment decision. Futuro Financial Services Pty Ltd and its authorised representatives (or credit representatives) do not accept liability for any errors or omissions of information supplied on this website
Steve May, Luke Styles and May Wealth Pty Ltd T/A Steve May Financial Services are Authorised Representatives / Corporate Authorised Representative of Futuro Financial Services Pty Ltd ABN 30 085 870 015, Australian Financial Services Licensee, Licence number 238478. Please refer to our website at www.stevemayfs.com.au to reference our Financial Services Guide and business/adviser profiles.
May Wealth Pty Ltd ABN 71 612 234 518 trading as Steve May Financial Services is a Corporate Authorised representative of Futuro Financial Services Pty Ltd ABN 30 085 870 015, Australian Financial Services Licensee, Licence number 238478.
Steve May and Luke Styles are Authorised Representative’s of Futuro Financial Services Pty Ltd ABN 30 085 870 015, Australian Financial Services Licensee, Licence number 238478