If you’re nearing retirement, you may be considering moving into a retirement village.
But with the multitude of options, how do you know which retirement village is the right one? If you have a list of retirement villages that have piqued your interest, it can be difficult to narrow them down to one. Make sure you look past the sales pitch, pay attention to the details of the village lifestyle and carefully consider your future needs.
Here are our six top questions to ask when selecting your perfect retirement village.
Is there an open day that you can attend?
The best way for you to get a feel of a retirement village’s lifestyle is to see it for yourself, with real people in real homes. Like real estate open inspections, most retirement villages have open days, where the different types of accommodation and facilities are available to inspect. With a village open day, you’ll get to see the village come to life; take a walk through the village, visit the community halls and facilities, and take your time looking at the accommodation options.
What social activities are on offer?
If you’re a particularly active or social person, or if you’re the quieter, reserved type, it’s important to know how the village’s lifestyle will complement your personality. When you’re reviewing your retirement village options, find out if the village has a social committee or events coordinator. What types of events or activities are on, and how frequently are they planned? What common areas are available? Part of your village fees will go towards maintenance of these areas, so you’ll need to be aware of the quality of the facilities you’re paying for.
How do current residents feel about the village?
The best way to tell if a retirement village is right for you is to speak with the people that already live there. Meet up with a few of the current residents for morning tea and ask them about their experience. How have they found the village community atmosphere? Find out how much input the residents have into decisions about village life and maintenance. Is there a residents committee? How are these residents elected? Take some notes and compare these answers with any fact sheets or information you’ve been supplied from the village management.
What will your future needs be?
You will need to consider how your personal needs will change as you get older. When deciding on the right retirement village, think about accessibility and support facilities inside the village, as well as outside. How close is the village to medical services, such as hospitals, allied health or medical clinics? Does the retirement village provide optional support services if you need them? Or can they help you find them, if they don’t offer these services themselves? Consider how the proximity of these services might affect you, how far you would need to go in an emergency or if you need to move into higher care in the future.
Can you speak with the village manager?
When you’re trying to decide between two or three retirement villages, you will need further information to narrow down your options to the perfect fit. Speaking to the manager of the retirement village can be really valuable. The village manager can answer any questions about the contract or facilities that you’re unsure of. They can give you a tour of the village, help you identify what your needs will be in the future and what type of accommodation will suit you best. The village manager can also advise on any waiting lists, associated costs or vacancies
What can you afford?
One of the most important things to consider when looking for your perfect retirement village is your financial situation. Retirement village contracts are quite different to residential property contracts, and you may need assistance understanding any legal or financial implications. Speak to your financial adviser, and take the contract to your lawyer for professional advice. They will be able to advise you on the total costs, your entitlements and any responsibilities that you might have.
A retirement village is a great option if you want to live independently, while in a safe, secure community.
Retirement villages provide great independence, paired with an active, social community in a secure environment. However, it can be difficult to know which retirement village is the right one for you. When you’re narrowing down your options, ensure you ask all the right questions to understand what you will be paying for and what you’ll be entitled to.
If you’re looking for an active, social retirement village in a beautiful location, consider Greenfields Living Tiwi Gardens. Register for one of our upcoming open days and discover a vibrant retirement lifestyle.
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