Above is a part of a webpage on the seniorshousing.co.nz website from a year ago.
As a concept, retirement villages are very profitable for the operators as occupants instead of owning a property title instead buy a ‘licence to occupy’ which is the value of the house as decided by a valuer at the time that the previous occupant ‘leaves’ plus a hefty ‘refurbishing fee’.
When the new occupant in turn ‘leaves’ — on average after 8 years — the capital gain is kept by the operator. In the meantime the occupant pays a monthly fee for the privilege of living there so the operator has enviable cash flow compared with other businesses. This monthly fee will include the council rates, but invariably also includes inflated charges for nominal ‘community services’ that the village supposedly offers.
Is the ‘alternative retirement village’ in the Maypole propaganda another term for a gated community? Well, last week we spent an hour with the council consents officer examining that. We came away with many plan copies which we are in the process of analysing, and will report in detail on here soon.