Retirement Village Reforms Instils Confidence in Seniors Housing

The Property Council of Australia welcomes today’s announcement of new reforms to the retirement living sector as a sensible approach which provides certainty for both operators and residents.
Today’s announcement by the NSW Government outlines a framework for measures for residents and operators when a resident vacates their home and it is placed on the market.

The Retirement Village reforms include:
- A right of residents to seek an operator-sponsored buyback after a period of six months in metropolitan areas and 12 months in regional areas.
- A seamless transition to aged care without financial hardship; through the future sale of a property.
- A 42-day cap on ongoing operator charges once residents have vacated a property.

“The Government’s reforms are fair and balanced ensuring protection for residents and their families as well as restoring the industry’s confidence to invest in housing options to support our ageing population, ” Ben Myers, the Property Council’s Executive Director – Retirement Living said today.

“This policy is a result of the Property Council and Retirement Village Residents Association working together with the NSW Government to ensure a policy outcome that is supported by all.

“The NSW Government has shown that they were listening to both the village operators and resident organisations, ensuring reforms which will ensure a smooth transition into aged care as well as ensuring a viable and vibrant senior housing sector with a choice for the consumer.” Mr Myers said.

The retirement living lifestyle not only provides a safe and secure living environment, research also shows that each resident in a retirement community saves the government an average of $12,600 per year in reduced health and aged care costs.

In addition to advocating for regulatory reform, the retirement living industry continues to be committed to providing standards above and beyond statutory obligations through the Retirement Living Code of Conduct.

The Code of Conduct ensures a high quality resident experience, by setting high standards for the marketing, selling and operating of retirement communities, promoting and protecting the interests of residents, and providing a clear framework for resolving disputes should they arise.

“The retirement village industry continues to be committed to providing safe and secure housing for older Australians, this has particularly been shown during the COVID-19 pandemic, where operators have gone to great lengths to ensure their communities have been kept well,” Mr Myers said.

Media Contact: Patrick Tilley | M 0498 007 911 | E ptilley@propertycouncil.com.au