This Frequently Asked Questions page is a good place to start when deciding whether retirement living is going to be right for you.
We look at several factors, including when it is that most people start considering retirement living, the kind of lifestyle you can expect to enjoy at one of our villages and some financial aspects you may need to take into consideration.
What is a retirement village?
A retirement village is a housing development designed specifically to suit the wants and needs of the over 55s. It offers a fresh lifestyle, allowing you to live independently in a villa or apartment, but without most of the home and garden maintenance. You also get to enjoy a village-like atmosphere and have access to a great range of facilities.
When is the right time to make a move into a retirement village?
We find that most people look to move into a retirement village when they or their partner have retired, and they are planning their future to ensure they make the most of this time, with its unlimited options! Retirement villages are the perfect environment to do this, with homes and facilities that are specifically designed for retirees. Living in a community of like-minded people with similar interests and hobbies often provides people with a new outlook on life.
Will I ‘own’ my property in a retirement village?
Like most homes in retirement villages in New Zealand, all of our homes are sold under an Occupation Right Agreement (ORA), which is governed by the Retirement Villages Act 2003. The ORA is an agreement between the resident and the village setting out the terms of your right to occupy your home in your chosen village. The title to the land and buildings remains with Lend Lease.
What costs are involved?
There are three costs involved in a retirement village. These are: Entry price of the ORA – This is the purchase price of your unit and is refundable to you on exit from the village (less the Facilities Fee referred to below). Facilities Fee – This is the deduction made at the end of your tenure from your Entry Price and includes a contribution towards village amenities and the refurbishment/sales costs of the unit on exit. It is 7.5% per annum of the entry price for a maximum of four years for villas and 10% per annum of the entry price for a maximum of three years for apartments making a total of 30%. Weekly Levy – Generally this covers the day to day running costs of the village, for example the base level includes rates, insurance, exterior maintenance of your unit, staff wages, gardening, a contribution towards community centre costs and sinking fund contribution, etc. The levy varies if you are in a villa or an apartment. Additional services are available on a user pays basis.
Who looks after the interests of the residents?
The Retirement Villages Act of 2003 requires the appointment of a Statutory Supervisor who represents the interests of the residents. In addition, each year resident representatives are elected to the Residents Advisory Committee, which works with the village management to ensure the community meets the needs of its residents. We also encourage you to discuss any ides or concerns you may have with the Manager, who’s door is always open. As a member of the Retirement Villages Association (RVA) of New Zealand, Lend Lease is committed to standards and principles that are laid down by them. Every three years the RVA conducts a full accreditation of the village to ensure their standards are being met.
What and who is the Statutory Supervisor?
Statutory Supervisors are approved by the Securities Commission to act as independent Statutory Supervisors within the retirement village industry. Their role can be likened to that of a trustee for the collective interests of the residents. They act as a ‘watch dog’ on behalf of all residents, and the management of the village reports on a regular basis to their Statutory Supervisor. The ‘Deed of Supervision’ clearly outlines the responsibilities of the Statutory Supervisor and a copy of this document is available on request.
As a resident, how will my financial interests be protected?
The ORA offers you the right to live in your dwelling for your lifetime (health permitting) and to enjoy the services and facilities provided within the village. Your interests as a resident are secured through an encumbrance over the village land held by the Statutory Supervisor for the benefit of all ORA holders.
What does the village manager do?
The village manager is based onsite and is in charge of the day-to-day administration of the village, as well as the hiring and supervision of any village employees or contractors. The manager is the primary contact point for residents. If you have any queries, concerns or feedback about the village, the village manager should be your first port of call.
What are our responsibilities as residents?
Legislation requires all villages to create rules and regulations that encourage harmonious co-existence between residents. These vary from village to village but are always contained in your village documentation, which should be read and understood prior to making any final decisions about purchasing a home in a village.
Can we have guests stay with us?
Of course! This is your home. Friends and family are very welcome to stay with you (for up to three months) and may use the communal facilities while in your company. Consideration of other residents and their ability to enjoy the amenity of the village is important to remember when guests are present.