National Retirement Update

‘A Wise Move Campaign’
The Retirement Living Council has recently launched its ‘A Wise Move’ industry campaign which will promote the great retirement living lifestyle to senior Australians, and also provide them with support and information on a brand-new consumer website www.awisemove.com.au   

The campaign will focus on three goals:

  1. To increase awareness and understanding of retirement living
  2. To increase aspiration and desire for retirement living
  3. To rebuild trust in the industry.

Retirement Living Council Executive Director Ben Myers said the campaign was part of a suite of initiatives providing practical tips to help potential residents make a wise move by choosing to live in a retirement village.

“The retirement living industry is working hard to listen to residents and is focused on ensuring that there is a much stronger focus on simplifying contracts and making retirement living as hassle free as possible," Mr Myers said.

"We want the experiences of residents in retirement villages to be the best experiences possible.

“This campaign is very much focused on increasing awareness and understanding of retirement living, so people can make an informed decision on what it’s all about and how it may help them.

”The campaign will also be one of the several topics on the agenda at the National Retirement Living Summit in Canberra, along with global consumer research, the downturn in the housing market, the industry 8-point-plan, the Royal Commission and much more.

Read more here.

2018 Retirement Census

New data has confirmed that the Australian retirement living sector is trending towards a greater proportion of vertical communities and a growing number of new developments are providing a wider variety of services to residents than ever before.

The annual PwC/Property Council Retirement Census for 2018 showed that nearly 30% of all new retirement communities under development have vertical village components, compared to 15% of existing developments, as baby boomer retirees show more of a preference for apartment living.

Other key findings show:

  • Entry into a retirement village remains affordable, at an average of 64% of the price of the median 2-bedroom house price across Australia (44% in Sydney and 55% in Melbourne); 
  • 97% of new developments have at least five facilities or services available for residents, including health services, emergency call systems, social programs, cafes and community centres; 
  • The average age of a retirement living resident has increased to 81, while the average age of entry remains 75 – only 2% of current residents are now aged under 70; and 
  • Village occupancy remains strong at an average of 89% nationally. 

Ben Myers, Executive Director – Retirement Living at the Property Council of Australia, said the Census shows how the industry is responding to changing resident needs, but also highlights some challenges for the industry.

“Despite a strong pipeline of units coming to the market over the next four years, the industry is struggling to access land and planning approvals to supply purpose-built housing for rapidly increasing number of older Australians,” Mr Myers said.

 “Just as interesting is the trend towards a fuller service offering that goes well beyond housing. Modern retirees are seeking a more holistic solution, including easy access to health services on site and a range of recreational options. 

“The Census also confirms some challenges the industry will look to address in 2019 – time on market for re-sales is increasing, reflecting a broader real estate trend as the residential market cools.”

A copy of the 2018 Retirement Living Census is available here.