Luckily in Perth, we have a huge range of retirement villages or over 55 villages which are scattered both in the suburbs of Perth, and regionally throughout Western Australia. First, it is often a good idea to decide if you want a particular suburb as there is no point looking at villages North of the River when all your friends and family live South, and you would have to continually drive across our busy freeway. To some, this may not matter but to me, as I age, I am happier to be closer to friends and family and not have to waste precious time driving an hour or so each time I visit.
Then, you need to decide what sort of housing you would like - do you want a very small unit, or would you rather have 3 bedrooms and two bathrooms? All this is quite important to have some idea of before you start looking at individual places. And of course, you may have to consider price structures as some of these villages cost in excess of $1 million to get a luxury unit. Some of them even allow you to take your current pet into the village, but if you own a pet, check this one out thoroughly before looking.
LEASE AGREEMENTS Retirement villages all have different legal structures so the actual ownership of the place you buy will vary from village to village. You, therefore, must read and/or take the agreement forms to a lawyer or someone who understands them, as many people sign without fully knowing the implications of these contracts. You will lose part of your equity if you sell or die, and this all depends on how the village is set up, so I think it is well worth spending the extra money on taking the contract to a lawyer.
There have been some problems with these villages and in July 2017 the West Australian reported as follows:
Retirement villages are to be scrutinised by the State Government's Consumer Protection unit, to ensure retirees are being treated fairly. A barrage of complaints by senior West Australians who feel they are being ripped off by retirement villages will be scrutinised by State Government investigators and lawyers.
Consumer Protection will mainly look into contracts after figures showed the Seniors' Housing Advisory Centre received more than 500 inquiries relating to retirement villages last financial year. They now plan to look more widely at contracts and other issues that arise, so it is imperative that you have proper advice before signing anything.
ACTIVITIES IN VILLAGES
The great part about many of these villages is the social life and programmes that they run which include evening meals at some.
FEES The actual cost of fees and how the cost of the fees is passed onto residents will vary from retirement village to retirement village. However, as stated earlier with buying a unit, before signing up for any retirement village you really need to ensure that you have carefully checked what fees you will have to pay.
The sorts of fees you can expect to pay will be fees that go towards the upkeep and improvements within the village and this will include the common areas such as roads, footpaths and recreational facilities. You will probably also have to pay a percentage for the use of areas such as pools and gyms. Some of the main companies who have these villages include the following:
NATIONAL LIFESTYLE VILLAGES
You can take a virtual tour through an NVL village here.
a swimming poo? that's not nice lol. A very good article. Would emphasise checking the exit fees as some are over the top. Also if you are disabled ensure there are facilities available. See if you can attend an event so you are happy with the type of people who live there.