Understanding Australian Law

About Me

Understanding Australian Law

Hello, my name is Nigel and this is my law blog. The law can be a complicated and complex thing to try and understand, especially if you are not a trained lawyer. I am not a legal professional but I take a deep interest in the law. It all started when my uncle was involved in a lengthy court case and I decided to find out a little bit more about it. I started reading a legal book and didn't stop. I am fascinated by the law so I decided to start a blog so I could share my passion with others.

Retirement Village Entry Tips

The process of joining a retirement village can be complex. More often than not, you will require the services of a retirement village lawyer to guide you through the legalities of moving into the facility. Below are some issues that you are likely to encounter as you move into the village. 

The Preferred Accommodation

Retirement villages offer a wide variety of accommodation options to suit the needs of their residents. They range from single-family units, apartments, condos, or cottages. Usually, potential residents can rent, lease or purchase the units. 

Type Of Title

In Australia, retirement villages have varying titles. It could be a strata, company, unit trust, long-term lease or periodic tenancy title. In a strata title, you become a member of the owners association after buying property and signing the retirement village contract. As such, you get to enjoy shared amenities with other residents. 

If the village has a company title, you purchase shares in the company that enables you to occupy your preferred unit. Besides, you have to comply with the company's terms of residence. Unit trusts are quite similar to company titles. A long-term lease allows you to live on the property for a specified period, while a periodic tenancy does not have an expiration date. They are often used by non-profit associations that provide aged care services. 

Condition Of The Property 

It is a critical consideration since it determines whether the property is reasonably priced. Typically, your lawyer should commission a pre-purchase inspection. The assessment evaluates whether the property meets the local building regulations and whether the structural features have defects. Besides, it provides details regarding the accessibility of the house, presence of pests, energy efficiency and repairs that the property may need. 

The Terms Of The Retirement Village Contract

Some of your concerns when assessing the terms of the retirement village contract should include: 

  • Are you allowed to sell your property at will? If so, does the management take a share of the capital gains?
  • Can you lease or rent out a section of your property?
  • Are you allowed to renovate your property to suit your needs and tastes?
  • Will you incur any exit fees?
  • What activities are restricted on the complex? For example, you could be prohibited from holding night parties or keeping pets.
  • Will you incur any extra costs? For example, it is common for retirement villages to charge a service fee to maintain the shared facilities in good condition. Besides, you might have to pay an extra fee for medical services, using the golf course or swimming pool. 

When moving into a retirement village, assess the available accommodation, type of title, condition of the property and the terms of the retirement village contract.