Why You Should Look Twice at a Retirement Village Contract before Adding Your Signature

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Last Will and Testament: The Benefits of Estate Planning

After I had an accident and had to spend some time in the hospital, I decided that it was time to make a will and do some estate planning. After all, you never know what is around the corner, and I would hate for a family member to miss out on inheriting from me if I were to suddenly pass away. I worked with a lawyer to draft a will. We then discussed the various ways I could arrange my estate. I had been worried that I wouldn’t understand the different legal terms, but my lawyer took the time to carefully explain them. I am now much happier knowing that everything is in place. I decided to set up this blog to offer tips to other people who are in the process of planning their estate.


Why You Should Look Twice at a Retirement Village Contract before Adding Your Signature

1 July 2022
 Categories: Law, Blog

When people reach their golden years, they may want to wind down and make life a lot easier after such a stressful time. In this situation, they may think about downsizing from their current property and going to live in a retirement village instead. While this may sound idyllic and can be in many cases, it's important to go into this type of arrangement with your eyes wide open. In particular, you need to read the small print of your legal agreement before signing it and get professional advice just to make sure. What are some of the potential problems?

Dealing with Complexity

The first thing to remember is that the typical retirement village contract is much more involved than if you were buying a new home in your own right. So, even though you may be familiar with buying and selling over your lifetime, there are a number of additional clauses to consider when you want to move into this type of place.

Understanding Fees and Charges

Firstly, there is a question of fees. The owner of the village may charge managerial fees that are directly related to their professional services and may accumulate with time. These fees may be entirely separate from the annual or monthly dues you'll be expected to pay for maintenance and upkeep. So, check to see if there is a secondary fee structure that may only become due when you move out or pass away. If you're okay with this type of situation, that is fine, but you'll certainly need to know before you sign on the dotted line.

Marketing Your Property

Some retirement villages may reserve the right to market and sell your property themselves. So, if you want to move somewhere else, you may be forced to go through them before you can advertise that property and move on. Ideally, you should be in charge of this situation and control your finances, especially as you may need some money to move to your new place. Make sure you understand any such clause in your contract so that you are not surprised as events unfold.

Receiving Your Money

You certainly need to refer to the contract to see how and when you will receive your funding when you move out, and your property has changed hands. There will need to be a time limit in place, or you may find that the retirement village takes much longer to reimburse your investment than you might ordinarily expect.

Getting Professional Advice

Before you move into a retirement village, take your contract to an experienced lawyer. If they find anything they think needs your extra attention, they will point it out to you. This will allow you to make your own decision and decide whether to go ahead or not. 

For more information, contact a local retirement village lawyer