Monday 4 September 2023
TAS Govt must strike balance in RV Act review
The Retirement Living Council is encouraging the Tasmanian Government to strike a balance between operator viability and consumer-focused reforms as it reviews the Retirement Villages Act.
RLC Executive Director Daniel Gannon said the retirement living industry is supportive of greater clarity and certainty for residents while also considering impacts on operators.
“Retirement communities are a housing solution whose time has come given the great Australian dream of home ownership is becoming a nightmare for many. This sentiment was underscored by the recent 2023 Intergenerational Report,” Mr Gannon said.
“We now know there are 4.6 million people around Australia aged over 65 today, a number that will grow to 7.1 million by 2043 – representing a 54 per cent increase in only two decades.
“This population shift will also have socio-economic impacts on Tasmania, including the housing supply shortage and the pressure on an already struggling residential aged care sector.
“At a time when Tasmania is addressing and grappling with housing supply constraints, we need legislation that balances resident and operator considerations to ensure industry continues to provide meaningful housing solutions.
“A viable retirement living industry in Tasmania advances the State Government’s capacity to pursue an ambitious ageing, health and wellbeing agenda by improving wellness outcomes for seniors and providing efficiencies that can be reinvested in services and infrastructure.”
The recent 2022 PwC/Property Council Retirement Census reveals the average cost of a two-bedroom unit in a Tasmanian retirement village grew to $460,000 over the 18 months to December 2022, while median house prices in the same locations over this period rose by 38.1 per cent to $678,000.
However, the Census also found that the three-year development supply pipeline of retirement units nationwide fell by more than half compared to the previous census forecast of 10,500 dwellings. Occupancy is effectively full.
“On average, units in retirement communities across metropolitan Hobart are 32 per cent cheaper than the median house price in the same suburb,” Mr Gannon said.
“This means if these reforms make it harder for operators to build and operate age-friendly communities, it could place a handbrake on supply at the worst possible time,” he said.
About the RLC
The Retirement Living Council is the national leadership group for the retirement living sector, championing policies that deliver age-friendly homes and better services in retirement communities.
More than 260,000 senior Australians live in approximately 2,500 retirement communities across the country.
Importantly, the sector generates almost $3.5 billion in annual savings to governments through reduced interaction with healthcare systems and delayed entry to aged care.
The RLC sits within the Property Council of Australia’s national advocacy team and is the most powerful voice of the sector, representing national retirement village and senior living community operators.
Media contact: Joe Schwab | 0402 687 890 | [email protected]