Retirement Villages

Our experienced team act for both retirement village scheme operators and for individuals as they enter retirement villages in Queensland.

Retirement Village Conveyancing for Individuals

Our Elder Law team has a reputation for their caring, patient approach to clients looking at entering  retirement villages. We are able to assist at each stage of the process, and are happy to come to you if travelling is a problem.

Buying into a retirement village is not as simple as buying a house.  It can be a complicated transaction which may come at a time when you are feeling vulnerable and uncertain about the future.  It is important that you seek out legal advice so that you properly understand the nature of what you are signing and the rights and obligations that you will have.  Our elder law experts would be pleased to help you navigate this important step.

There are several different ways of owning or occupying a unit in a retirement village.  The most common are:

  • Buying the freehold title to a unit in the retirement village.
    The Retirement Village will usually be set up similarly to a town house complex with a Body Corporate;
  • Lease the unit under a long term lease.
    The lease will usually be a 99 year lease; or
  • Hold a licence to occupy the unit.
    The entry costs for Retirement Villages using a licence model are usually lower, however you will not have a legal interest in the property and will not accrue any capital gains.

Each of these models has benefits and drawbacks which should be considered carefully by you, ideally after you have taken legal and financial advice.

Before you sign a residence contract, there are many things to consider, including:

  • What services will be provided and what is their cost?
  • Is there a high care facility onsite which will enable me to obtain nursing care if necessary in the future without having to move?
  • What are the exit fees and what will be involved if I need to move?
  • How are disputes resolved?
  • Can I keep a pet, plant a garden, or paint my unit?
  • What insurance will I need?

The operator of the retirement village is required to provide you with a Public Information Document which details the rights and obligations of both yourself as a resident and the operators of the Retirement Village. We are able to help you understand this document so that you can make an informed decision.

Services for Retirement Village Scheme Operators

Developers and Retirement Scheme Operators benefit from our strong commercial property practice, and those in the charitable sector from our detailed knowledge of the not for profit landscape.

Our team , as leaders in the not for profit and charity space and with a strong focus in commercial property law, are ideally placed to assist retirement village scheme operators and developers.

We can assist in the areas of:

  • Review of Public Information Documents;
  • Establishment of village bylaws and policies,
  • Review of scheme documents;
  • Statutory compliance;
  • Corporate structuring and not for profit issues;
  • Review of residence contracts (licence agreements, leases, sale contracts);
  • Termination, sales, conveyancing;
  • Residents Committee and Body Corporate issues;
  • Resident disputes, and disputes before QCAT;
  • Village closure.

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