25 September 2023

Retirement villages come of age

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New laws giving the residents of retirement villages in the ACT a greater say in how the villages are managed came into effect on 1 July.

Minister for Community Services and Facilities, Chris Steel said the laws covered changes to the voting rules.

“This is intended to make voting more equitable between sole occupiers and multiple occupants of units in retirement villages,” Mr Steel said.

“Residents will now have ‘one vote per unit’ rather than ‘one vote per person’ to make voting more equitable.

He said however that residents would be able to agree by special resolution to restore the ‘one vote per person’ model for votes on specific issues.

“There will also be changes to clarify the division of responsibility between residents and operators for paying for the upkeep of the village,” the Minister said.

“This will improve the management of retirement villages by ensuring the rules around responsibility for capital maintenance and replacement are applied fairly and consistently.”

He said other changes included greater transparency in decision-making through a new optional conciliation process for residents seeking to resolve disputes with operators, and a range of measures to assist residents who live in unit-titled retirement villages to reduce the burden of sale of their property.

He said he expected the changes to have a significant impact on the more than 30 retirement villages in the ACT.

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