Unless you are an international expert in retirement living you might not be able to guess exactly what the term retirement villages entails. Certainly when the Topretirements.com editorial team went to research retirement villages, the results were not what we expected.
The basic concept of a retirement village is fairly obvious, communities where people in retirement come to live together. The surprising thing for those of us in the U.S. is that the concept seems to be an Australian, New Zealand, and British idea. In practice they seem to be a type of CCRC - Continuing Care Retirement Community - a place that combines independent living, assisted living, and a nursing home. In New Zealand in particular there appear to be retirement villages in each NZ state. They differ in type and are tightly regulated. It appears that people generally buy into these "villages" and thereafter have certain clearly identified rights and privileges (See "Resources" below for more).
Some of the regulations affecting retirement villages in New Zealand and Australia include legal structures, exit fees, service charges, refurbishment costs, rights to continue tenancy, operator default, termination, credit risk, etc. Actually these are the same types of legal issues that smart buyer of U.S. retirement communities and assisted living facilities should investigate, but all too often do not.
Most people in the U.S., if asked about retirement villages would probably think about "The Villages" in Central Florida near Ocala. They would do that because it is one of the few U.S. retirement communities with "village" in its name, and it is also one of the largest communities in the country (over 60,000 residents). There are retirement villages in Texas and at least one retirement villlage in North Carolina. The University of Pittsburgh also has some retirement villages that it markets.
Retirement villages in New Zealand
Retirement Village Handbook
The Villagesnear Ocala Florida
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