Downsizing

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How to downsize without leaving your suburb

<p><em>Image: Readers Digest</em></p> <p>The kids are long gone, you’re tired of never ending cleaning and expensive utility bills, and your large property is now more of a hindrance to your lifestyle. Whether you want to simplify your life or start a new stress-free phase,<span> </span>downsizing your space<span> </span>offers many benefits. The only problem is, when most of us think of downsizing, we think of leaving behind the family home and moving into a smaller place, which can often mean saying goodbye to friends and family.</p> <p>If that thought makes you anxious, don’t worry. Downsizing doesn’t mean you have to sell up and move out. If you want to stay put, in a home that better meets your lifestyle needs, here are two things to consider:</p> <p><strong>Save stress with a knockdown rebuild</strong></p> <p>If you love where you live, but you don’t want to have such a big space anymore, a knockdown rebuild is a great way to build a new home, without having to leave your comfort zone. With a<span> </span>knockdown rebuild<span> </span>you have a blank canvas to work with, so you can design a home that you love from scratch, choosing the size and style to suit your later years. One of the biggest benefits of a knockdown rebuild is that it may be a lot more cost effective than renovating. It can even be less time consuming, and less stressful! If you live on a large block that has the potential to subdivide, you can even knock down your current home, build a smaller one on part of the land, and sell off the other part. This might help you to recoup some of the costs of the rebuild as well.</p> <p><strong>Split your home with dual occupancy</strong></p> <p>If you’re living in an outdated home with plenty of yard space, a dual occupancy home could be the solution. Why not knock your home down and build two homes, live in one and rent out the other? By doing this, you’ll have less space to worry about, and you’ll also be receiving income for the other half of your property. This might also free up some of the equity you have in your current home, and there are a number of tax bonuses as well. If renting the other home isn’t your goal, you might choose to keep family members close, using the second dwelling for them. Many Dual occupancy homes also have the added benefit that if you do choose to sell at any point, you can sell them separately, which could double your sales income!</p> <p>Do your research and find out what’s possible on your block and keep an open mind. Talk to a professional builder and do what’s right for you, and your future.</p> <p><em>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with Metricon. </em><em>This article first appeared in <a href="https://www.readersdigest.com.au/home-tips/how-to-downsize-without-leaving-your-suburb">Reader’s Digest.</a> For more of what you love from the world’s best-loved magazine, <a href="http://readersdigest.innovations.com.au/c/readersdigestemailsubscribe?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=articles&amp;utm_campaign=RDSUB&amp;keycode=WRA87V">here’s our best subscription offer.</a></em></p>

Downsizing

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Tips to make the most of downsizing

<p>If you’re struggling to justify “the empty nest” now that the kids have (finally) moved out, you may have considered downsizing. At least 1.6 million Australians feel the same way – up 30% from last year, <a rel="noopener" href="https://switzer.com.au/the-experts/peter-switzer/honey-ive-shrunk-the-family-home/" target="_blank">new research shows.</a></p> <p>Downsizing is looking for a smaller, more manageable place. With a smaller square metre count comes other decisions – do you want to make a seachange? Treechange? Or swap the suburbs for something swankier in the inner city? Though selling your old three-bedroom in the suburban fringes may fetch a great price, will it be enough for something more upmarket? Can you get finance as a pensioner or self-funded retiree?</p> <p>Some of us want to downsize into something more accessible. As our mobility decreases, as much as we hate to admit it, climbing stairs just to get to bed becomes more and more of a pain.</p> <p>No matter what you’re looking for, here are some tips to make the most of your downsizing – so you can have as a hassle-free experience as you can.</p> <p><strong>What’s your plan?</strong></p> <p>Like all things in life, we all have to make plans. Where do you want to live? How many bedrooms is best? Do you want to be closer to the family or somewhere with great amenities such as doctors, shopping, gyms, and cafes? Do you want to join a retirement community for companionship and some form of managed service? This all has to factor into what you intend your life to look like as a retiree.</p> <p><strong>Prepare for downsizing with decluttering</strong></p> <p>Your home has accumulated a lot of memories over the years – <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.templeandwebster.com.au/style-and-advice/Peter-Walshs-5-best-decluttering-tips-E10085" target="_blank">and a lot of junk</a>. But, as the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. If something sitting in the back cupboard has more than a fine coating of dust on it, it’s probably best to give it away or sell it. You should also have an impartial friend help with getting rid of your junk – so you can keep on task and be free of sentiment.</p> <p>You could even make a bit of money by selling some things on Gumtree or eBay – or hold a garage or yard sale.</p> <p><strong>Downsizing may mean upgrading – your finance options</strong></p> <p>If you’re looking at units, homes, and communities and balking at the prices of some of the properties on offer, you aren’t alone. It’s common to see that the sale of your home may not cover the purchase price of the smaller home in a more desirable location.</p> <p>Savvy Managing Director Bill Tsouvalas says retirees that intend to buy a home with high equity and a shorter loan term should <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.savvy.com.au/home-loans/compare-home-loans/" target="_blank">compare their available options</a> and may be able to gain access to the funds they require. “As long as a retiree passes the eligibility criteria, has some kind of income, and is prepared to decrease the loan term, they can get approval for a home loan for a downsized property. You may need to commit to an exit strategy such as lump sum repayments or ongoing income from superannuation to ensure the loan repayments are fulfilled.”</p> <p><strong>Looking at government incentives</strong></p> <p>The Federal Government offers seniors incentives to assist with downsizing. The major incentive revolves around superannuation contributions. People aged 65 or over can make an after-tax contribution of up to $300,000 into their super from the proceeds of selling their home. The voluntary contribution and $1.6 million balance rules are waived. However, the house must have been your principal residence for at least 10 years.</p> <p>Other states and territories also offer <a rel="noopener" href="https://nationalseniors.com.au/news/latest/stamp-duty-concessions-across-australia" target="_blank">stamp duty waivers for seniors</a> looking to downsize.</p> <p><strong>Always get impartial advice</strong></p> <p>Whether it comes to decluttering, finding a smaller place, or getting finance for your dream retirement home, you should always get impartial advice from accountants, lawyers, and home loan brokers. It can save you a lot of time and heartache.</p> <p> </p> <p><strong><em>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with </em></strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.savvy.com.au/home-loans/compare-home-loans/" target="_blank"><strong><em>Savvy</em></strong></a><strong><em>.</em></strong></p>

Downsizing

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Join the footloose retirees who are saving money for retirement AND exploring great lifestyle locations

<p dir="ltr"><strong>In the space of just six years, NSW couple Vicki and Mark Rayner have been able to save money for their retirement and moved to three different lifestyle-rich locations - all thanks to the land lease living model.</strong></p> <p>The Rayners are part of a growing group of footloose retirees who are exploring the new places and friendly faces which can be found across<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia’s 52 communities</a>.</strong></p> <p>These homeowners are taking advantage of the significant financial benefits of land lease living, which includes being able to release equity from their family home and move without paying stamp duty or exit fees.</p> <p>These same financial benefits make it easy for homeowners to move to, and test out, some of Australia’s best known coastal holiday spots, where Hometown Australia communities are located. Read on to find out more.</p> <p><strong>Rayners have moved three times in six years</strong></p> <p>In 2015, Vicki and Mark Rayner sold their four bedroom house in Penrith and moved to Hometown Australia’s Valhalla community at Chain Valley Bay, on the foreshore of Lake Macquarie.</p> <p>“We loved the area as it was right on the lake and the brand new homes that were on offer were beautiful and were the right price,” Vicki said. </p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7841315/downsizing-article-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/e2bf07a40b2943f594435163dffa9944" /></p> <div> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Vicki and Mark Rayner at their home at The Dunes in Sussex Inlet</em></div> </div> <p>By moving to Valhalla, the Rayners were able to top-up their retirement funds, due to the significant price differential between their former house and their new and less expensive three-bedroom land lease home. </p> <p>After three years living at Chain Valley Bay, Vicki and Mark decided on a literal “sea change” to Hometown Australia’s Beachfront community Hallidays Point on the NSW Mid-North Coast.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7841314/downsizing-article-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/0449900849a24fb7ba79bb2056fd5bd9" /></p> <div> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Aerial photo of the Hometown Australia Beachfront community at Halliday's Point on the NSW Mid-North Coast</em></div> </div> <p>“We came across the beachside properties up at the community at Hallidays Point and we loved the location,” Vicki said. </p> <p>“We were ready for a change and that’s one of the luxuries of land lease living. There were no exit fees, selling fees or stamp duty on our home so financially it was a good move too. </p> <p>“The move was easy. We put our home on the market with Hometown Australia, waited for a buyer and then everything fell into place. The whole process took three months.”</p> <p>When moving into Hallidays Point, Vicki and Mark downsized to a two-bed home with bigger living areas and a bigger backyard and were able to top up their equity again. </p> <p>At the end of 2020, Vicki and Mark moved to another Hometown Australia community, The Dunes at Sussex Inlet on the NSW South Coast.</p> <p>“We’ve always loved the South Coast but couldn’t find anything to buy when we first retired,” Vicki said. “We were down here at the end of last year and came across The Dunes community. It’s a lovely spot so we put our house on the market and here we are.”</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7841313/downsizing-article-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/01236a1d3c7448189abe3673e6013547" /></p> <div> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Hometown Australia's Beachfront community at Halliday's Point includes a spacious pool and community centre</em></div> </div> <p>“The mobility and flexibility of land lease living is absolutely a benefit. </p> <p>“It’s allowed us to move around and live in different areas in a cost-effective way.</p> <p>“Moving between Hometown Australia communities we’ve also had the benefit of knowing what to expect and have always been surrounded by like-minded people of a similar age with similar interests.”</p> <p>“We’ve made friends with many other couples and there’s always so much to get involved in. All locations have a community hall and offer a range of activities and social gatherings. On Australia Day there’s always a sausage sizzle and on Anzac day a small ceremony.” </p> <p><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Find out more about Hometown Australia’s communities here</a></strong></p> <p><strong><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7841312/downsizing-article-4.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/a491f77d528c42e882c867d98ae472cb" /></strong></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>An interior photo of the community centre at Hometown Australia's Beachfront at Halliday's Point</em></div> <p>Hometown Australia land lease living has also provided the Rayners with financial security.</p> <p>“We’ve been really happy with the return we’ve got when we’ve sold our homes,” Vicki said. “They’ve all gone up in value so, while you pay more for your next home, your current one has risen too.</p> <p>“We’ve always felt very secure and looked after as part of Hometown Australia communities. For us it’s been the best move we ever made.”</p> <p><strong>About land lease living in a Hometown Australia community</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">Some 10,000 residents currently live in Hometown Australia’s land lease communities, located across Queensland, NSW and South Australia. </p> <p dir="ltr">These communities are in attractive locations, including Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, Moreton Bay and Gold Coast regions, NSW’s Mid-North, North Coast and Port Stephens regions and South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7841311/downsizing-article-5.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/fd0684eb33ab4b0aa2aaf0035685fe99" /></p> <div> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Hometown Australia communities are located right across Australia, including the Sunshine Coast</em></div> </div> <p dir="ltr">Most communities contain a range of resort-like features to keep residents active and socially connected, including pools, tennis courts, restaurants, community areas and bars.</p> <p dir="ltr">Residents in these communities purchase a dwelling and then benefit from a secure, long-term ground lease for this dwelling with Hometown Australia.</p> <p dir="ltr">The land lease living model provides many financial and lifestyle benefits.</p> <p dir="ltr">Firstly, Hometown community homes start at just $250,000, with most of these having two or three bedrooms, a study, and either 1.5 or two bathrooms. </p> <p dir="ltr"><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7841310/downsizing-article-6.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/d47d86fcc3444129a5d00c15ad1dbd7d" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>The Shore Break home design at Hometown Australia's The Dunes community at Sussex Inlet</em></div> <p dir="ltr">The affordable price point of these homes allows many retirees to top up their retirement savings, after selling their family home and moving into a Hometown community.</p> <p dir="ltr">In addition, because no land is actually being purchased, buyers don’t have to pay stamp duty or ongoing council rates. This is a further saving of many thousands of dollars.</p> <p dir="ltr">In addition, there are no exit fees when you leave a Hometown Australia community.</p> <p>These two features make it easy for residents to move between communities and explore new locations. </p> <p>This compares to owners of general apartments or houses, who need to pay stamp duty every time they move, and residents of retirement villages and some other land lease operators, who need to pay exit fees when they move out.</p> <p>Finally, because of the ground lease arrangement, residents are often eligible to claim rent assistance via the<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/rent-assistance/how-much-you-can-get#a1" target="_blank">Commonwealth Rent Assistance<span> </span></a>scheme, to offset their monthly site fees.</p> <p><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Find out more about Hometown Australia’s communities here.</a></strong></p> <p><em>This article is written in partnership with Hometown Australia. </em></p>

Downsizing

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Discover the new alternative to nursing homes which provides a kinder care solution for your parent

<p><strong>An innovative new care approach which is centred around delivering personalised solutions and choice is attracting interest from families who don’t want to see their loved ones move into a nursing home.</strong></p> <p>The<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://ldk.com.au/aspire/" target="_blank">Aspire Aged Care</a></strong><span> </span>model is based at LDK’s six-hectare Greenway Views seniors living complex at Tuggeranong, Canberra.</p> <p>Stage one of Greenway Views was delivered at the end of 2019 and includes 210 apartments and a wide range of community facilities. Stage two is due to be completed later in 2021 and will include additional apartments and a beautiful new alfresco bar and entertainment area.</p> <div> <p>Aspire Aged Care is co-located within Greenway Views and has 117 beautifully appointed apartments providing the same level of care as a nursing home, but within the vibrant village community.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7840132/downsizing_spon-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/3425911efdc34d8a9035c3a2a152f9bb" /></p> <div><em>Apartments at Aspire Aged Care have a modern and attractive interior design.</em></div> <div> <p>Within Aspire Aged Care, residents live in their own homes and receive tailored care services from registered nurses and care staff, who are on-site 24 hours a day, seven days a week. </p> <p>This is a different approach to that commonly found in nursing homes, in which residents are effectively seen as patients under medical care and therefore part of an institution.</p> <p>“Before we launched Aspire Aged Care, we conducted research to gauge what consumers were looking for,” LDK CEO Bryon Cannon said. </p> <p>“Not only did they want certainty and transparency when downsizing, they also didn’t want to go to a nursing home and wanted to stay at home for as long as possible. </p> <p>"The consumer has changed significantly in the last few decades, so what might have been acceptable for the consumer before might not be suitable for the baby boomers and their families of today.”</p> <p><strong>Modern and spacious apartments and latest technology</strong></p> <p>The modern and spacious studio and one-bedroom apartments in Aspire Aged Care feature their own kitchen, laundry and balcony, with residents having a key to their front door and plenty of space for their own treasured belongings.  </p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7840131/downsizing_spon-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/2962e08a578f4db2a28aafdb8944b3d5" /></p> <div><em>The apartments at Aspire Aged Care include a kitchen, laundry and balcony</em></div> <div> <p>In a move that has been very popular among residents, the apartments are also pet-friendly.</p> <p>Each well-appointed apartment provides privacy and views of the lush natural surroundings as well as access to all Greenway View’s onsite amenities and communal areas. </p> <p>This ensures residents and their families can enjoy the vibrancy of a village environment, while having immediate access to the highest quality of customised care.</p> <p>Innovative and unobtrusive technology is designed to provide peace of mind and a safe environment for residents and their families.</p> </div> <div> <p>Thoughtful design features include responsive circadian lighting to assist the wellbeing of dementia residents and passive sensor monitoring and emergency response systems for immediate assistance.</p> <p>Apart from the physical features, Aspire Aged Care residents and their families are also benefiting from LDK’s customer-centered values and the company’s commitment to staffing excellence.</p> <p>“Our staff must align to the company's culture of Love, Decency and Kindness, which makes up our LDK name,” Mr Cannon said.</p> <p>"We focus very heavily on culture.</p> <p>“We model our business on being a genuine people-first business.</p> <p>“We care for people, and our people care for people, so we need to invest a lot of time and resources into developing our workforce and have their values align to the values of the business, our purpose and our vision. </p> <p>“If we have an engaged workforce, we can deliver the best resident outcomes, and that's what we strive for."</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7840134/downsizing_spon-4.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/5d5afb5e32f747e5b1f0152bc3b87fcf" /></p> <p><em>Aspire Aged Care residents live in a village environment</em></p> <p>Aspire Aged Care offers all levels of care, including palliative and end of life care, dementia care and private respite care. It also includes a comprehensive activity and lifestyle program for residents.</p> <p>This is part of LDK’s “One Move Promise”, which effectively means residents won’t need to move outside of the village for care reasons.</p> <p><strong>Testimonials for Aspire Aged Care</strong></p> <p>Despite only opening in early 2020, resident and family testimonials are already rolling in for the Aspire Aged Care model.</p> <p>“I’ve had a bit of experience looking in nursing home as a legatee for the last 26 years, it wasn’t what I wanted for my wife,” said Jim Quick.</p> <p>“I saw the advertising for LDK and come over to look.</p> <p>“I was very impressed with the model, I was back within two days to pay a deposit.</p> <p>“We chose to come here for the care that’s available, which in seven months we have found to be faultless.”</p> <p>“We looked at a few nursing homes and retirement villages and were very discouraged by what we saw and what seemed to be available,” said Nancy Cogan.</p> <p>“One day I saw an advertisement in the paper for LDK, what popped out at me was the one move promise, that’s what brought us here.”</p> <p>“Since moving in there was an immediate increase in the care available for my husband.”</p> <p><strong>Conclusion</strong></p> <p>At LDK, we know every individual’s ageing journey is different. </p> <p>That’s why we partner with each resident to tailor a care plan to suit their individual needs, wishes and preferences.</p> <p>The Aspire Aged care offering is simple, providing services and support in the privacy and comfort of your own home, delivered with Love, Decency and Kindness.</p> <p>Find out more about<span> </span><a rel="noopener" href="https://ldk.com.au/aspire/" target="_blank"><strong>Aspire Aged Care</strong><span> </span></a>here. </p> <div><em>This article was made in partnership with <a rel="noopener" href="https://ldk.com.au/aspire/" target="_blank"><strong>Aspire Aged Care</strong></a>. </em></div> </div> <p>​<img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7840130/downsizing_spon-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/ce749ca57d8147b9abe61a29d552d08f" /></p> <div><em>Interior photo of an Aspire Aged Care apartment</em></div> <div></div> </div> </div>

Downsizing

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How to save up to $150,000 when downsizing into a new home in great lifestyle locations across Australia

<p dir="ltr"><strong>Imagine being able to downsize into a new home for well under the full purchase price, allowing you to put away up to $150,000 into your retirement savings?</strong></p> <p>This, in a nutshell, is how buyers are using the unique shared equity home purchase solution being offered by national over 50s lifestyle community operator Hampshire.</p> <p>The Hampshire Property Group is a family owned Australian company with 20 years’ experience in the retirement living industry.</p> <p>Its 17 communities are located in desirable coastal, regional and outer metropolitan areas across New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.</p> <p><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.hampshirevillages.com.au/retirement-villages/" target="_blank" data-auth="NotApplicable">FIND OUT MORE ABOUT HAMPSHIRE'S 17 COMMUNITIES HERE</a></p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839761/sponarticle10-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/e02341c320e146c081d6b22b24470b91" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>Residents enjoy great facilities at Hampshire's communities, including this pool at Banksia Grove at Williamtown in NSW</em></p> <p style="text-align: left;"> </p> <p>Hampshire has been offering its shared equity solution for the past 12 years.</p> <p>It allows incoming residents to purchase a new home for as little as 65 per cent of the set purchase price.</p> <p>OverSixty.com.au has spoken to a number of Hampshire community residents, and the company itself, to better understand the shared equity offer.</p> <p><strong>Residents who’ve used shared equity</strong></p> <p>In June 2020, Jim and Lorraine Mountford purchased a new two bedroom home at Hampshire’s<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.hampshirevillages.com.au/rest-point-lifestyle-village-nowra/" target="_blank">Rest Point community at Nowra on the NSW South Coast</a>. </strong></p> <p>However, instead of paying the full $360,000 purchase price, the Mountfords were able to take advantage of Hampshire’s shared equity offer and instead pay $252,000. </p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839760/sponarticle10-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/7c906b4b44f24185bce47c866c6a150a" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Lorraine and Jim Mountford (right) and Maria Zdjelar (left) at Rest Point village</em></div> <p>This means the Mountfords own 70 per cent of the dwelling, with Hampshire retaining ownership of the remaining 30 per cent. </p> <p>Despite this proportional ownership, the Mountfords are able to enjoy all of Rest Point’s facilities and activities, including its swimming pool and community centre, just like residents who’ve paid full price.</p> <p>Mr Mountford told OverSixty.com.au that his wife and himself had moved from Dapto, in Wollongong’s southern suburbs.</p> <p>“We had a lovely four bedroom house, but it was too big for us and still had a mortgage on it,” Mr Mountford said.</p> <p>“We chose to retire to Rest Point, as it’s still close enough for the rest of our family to easily visit, but it’s also near hospitals and shopping and only 15 minutes from South Coast beaches.</p> <p>“We were very happy with the house we ended up buying at Rest Point. </p> <p>“However, if we’d paid the full purchase price, we would have also had to sell our last investment property, which provides an important rental return for us.</p> <p>“So by using the shared equity offer, we were able to move into the community and home we wanted, but still hold on to our investment property.”</p> <p>Meanwhile, fellow Rest Point resident Maria Zdjelar has used the shared equity home purchase solution on several occasions to help her with everyday living expenses. </p> <p>Ms Zdjelar first moved into Rest Point a decade ago. Since then, she’s moved home three times, each time making a shared equity purchase. </p> <p>By moving into smaller homes and by using the shared equity solution, Ms Zdjelar has been able to unlock retirement funds and also continue to live in the community, which she positively likens to being on a “permanent holiday”.</p> <p><strong>Shared equity an affordable housing solution</strong></p> <p>Hampshire Property Group CEO Frank Sharkey said the shared equity solution was an important tool which helped people to achieve their retirement dreams.</p> <p>“We often find potential buyers have been holidaying for many years in the areas where our communities are located, and they like the area and want to retire there,” Mr Sharkey said. </p> <p>“However, they’ve been unable to afford the full purchase price to move into a new home in one of our communities. This is particularly the case for people who’ve lived for many years in regional areas, where home prices are lower than in capital cities.</p> <p>“Shared equity provides a real affordable housing solution to these buyers.</p> <p>“In addition, we also find buyers who want to use shared equity to free up their retirement savings, so they can do things on their bucket list such as buy caravans and go on holidays, or to help children and grandchildren.”</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839759/sponarticle10-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/771b646091f349d99efb198ce8d620d2" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>A new home with caravan parking at Hampshire's Casino Lifestyle Village in northern NSW</em></div> <p>Mr Sharkey said new homes in Hampshire’s communities were generally worth between $280-380,000, although could reach up to $500,000. This means using shared equity can deliver a saving of up to $150,000.</p> <p>Importantly, Mr Sharkey said Hampshire didn’t offer “two-tiered pricing” - in other words the full price of dwellings was static and wasn’t influenced by whether it was purchased in full or via the shared equity pathway.  </p> <p><strong>Details about the scheme</strong></p> <p>There are some terms and conditions which apply to shared equity offers.</p> <p>For instance, an opportunity fee applies to shared equity purchases. This fee is linked to the value of the home and the length of the stay, and is charged to compensate Hampshire for not receiving the full purchase price.</p> <p>In addition, the shared equity offer is primarily available for newly-built homes and owners are required to maintain, repair and insure the whole of the home.<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.hampshirevillages.com.au/affordable-retirement-homes/" target="_blank">Please enquire with Hampshire at this web page to learn about other conditions</a>.</strong></p> <p>Mr Sharkey says that, after weighing up all the options, around one in five buyers take up the shared equity solution.</p> <p>Importantly, these buyers reap many of the other financial benefits of land lease living, including owning a dwelling but at the same time being able to avoid stamp duty and council rates and being able to claim government rent assistance (subject to eligibility).</p> <p>Hampshire is the only national land lease community operator currently offering a shared equity solution.</p> <p><a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://www.hampshirevillages.com.au/affordable-retirement-homes/" target="_blank" data-auth="NotApplicable">CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE ABOUT HAMPSHIRE'S COMMUNITIES AND ITS UNIQUE SHARED EQUITY SOLUTION</a></p> <div style="text-align: left;"><em>Written by <span>Mark Skelsey. </span></em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"><em><span>This is a sponsored article in partnership with <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.hampshirevillages.com.au/" target="_blank">Hampshire Villages. </a></span></em></div> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839758/sponarticle10-4.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/0a794252eeec403b89899090fff0ed02" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>A new home at Hampshire's Mudgee Lifestyle Village in regional NSW</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"></div>

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Why Victorian retirees are chasing the sun north to Queensland's Hervey Bay

<p><strong>With State borders once again open, there’s never been a better time for Victorians to enjoy a warmer climate and become part of a friendly community by moving north to Queensland’s stunning Hervey Bay.</strong></p> <p><strong>Why Hervey Bay?<span> </span></strong> </p> <p>Located just a three-and-a-half hour drive or 40-minute flight from Brisbane, and with a population of around 50,000 people, Hervey Bay is renowned for its visiting humpback whales and pleasant climate.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839405/hervey-bay-is-known-as-a-whale-watching-mecca.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/1a61ad41a7f9404d926326585ac73922" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Hervey Bay is known as a whale watching mecca</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"> <p>Hervey Bay boasts average high temperatures of 23 degrees, which compares very favourably to average August high temperatures of a chilly 16°C in Melbourne.</p> <p>Hervey Bay’s relaxed appeal and pleasant climate makes it a perfect year-round destination for swimming, sailing, fishing, yachting, waterskiing, stand-up paddle boarding, snorkelling and more.</p> <p>The township’s golden beaches stretch for about 14 kilometres, with the gorgeous calm waters sheltered from winds and swells by Fraser Island.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839404/hervey-bay-has-14km-of-stunning-beaches-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/37cacecda4db4a419e2a6fe2cd688146" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Hervey Bay has 14km of stunning beaches</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"> <p>The cosmopolitan and alfresco cafes on the main Esplanade running alongside the bay also add a further seaside charm.</p> <p><strong>About the Fraser Shores retirement villages in Hervey Bay</strong></p> <p>Many of Hervey Bay’s incoming residents are finding their way to the two conveniently located<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.frasershores.com.au/" target="_blank">Fraser Shores retirement villages.</a></strong></p> <p>Operated by Blue Care (a service group of UnitingCare Queensland), these two villages are collectively home to some 441 single-storey homes.</p> <p>Importantly, these villages are providing the social benefits and community interaction that research shows many over 50s are craving in the post-COVID-19 environment.</p> <p>Residents at the Fraser Shores retirement villages came together to have fun and support each other during the worst of COVID-19.</p> <p>This same great sense of community means it is easy for incoming residents to meet new friends and be part of an active and supportive network.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839403/the-fraser-shores-villages-have-a-great-community-spirit-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/4565e66373aa4b4d937344c679290fb8" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>The Fraser Shores villages have a great community spirit</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"> <p>A well-organised residents’ committee arranges functions and social activities, including outdoor and indoor bowls, pool and billiards, movie nights, tai chi, line dancing, yoga, arts and crafts, exercise and computer classes.</p> <p>Residents at the Fraser Shores villages can also receive individually tailored support and care for peace of mind from a range of Blue Care community services, if and when they need it.</p> <p>In addition, the homes at Fraser Shores are surrounded by amazing resort style facilities, giving residents unlimited use of the full-sized bowling green, swimming pool, community centre, licensed bar, fitness centre, craft and computer room, outdoor barbeque areas, libraries and so much more.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839402/enjoy-the-full-sized-bowling-green-at-fraser-shores.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/0cce54b726094314ab79aa779a2e7827" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Enjoy the full-sized bowling green at Fraser Shores</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"> <p><strong>Room to move in the Fraser Shores homes </strong></p> <p>COVID-19 has<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.downsizing.com.au/news/787/Downsizing-no-more-Australian-over-50s-want-more-living-space-and-independence-due-to-COVID-19" target="_blank">accelerated</a></strong><span> </span>many over 50s housing trends already underway, including the desire for independent living and more personal space in or around the home.</p> <p>More than half of respondents to a survey of over 50s Australians say two or more bedrooms are essential, up from 48 per cent in a survey undertaken before the pandemic.</p> <p>At Fraser Shores, incoming residents can choose from a wide selection of spacious brick-and-tile, two- and three-bedroom homes – including an executive model with three bedrooms, two en-suites and a hobby room. Home prices range from $250,000 to $505,000.</p> <p>All designs offer careful orientation and large doors and windows for maximum cross-ventilation. This helps village residents take advantage of coastal breezes. All homes are built at ground level for easy access and feature spacious modern kitchens, bedrooms and living areas.</p> <p>Finally, each home is equipped with an emergency call system, which is monitored on-site 24 hours a day by trained staff with first aid certification.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839401/enjoy-a-dip-at-the-fraser-shores-swimming-pool.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/024a264bcaf449f28148d7de045f3580" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>Enjoy a dip at the Fraser Shores swimming pool</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"> <p><strong>Your perfect grey nomad adventure starting point</strong></p> <p>For the grey nomad brigade chasing fun, sun and adventure, the Fraser Shores villages represent the perfect home base. It’s an ideal starting point to explore the rest of Queensland’s coast and highly diverse inland environment. </p> <p>For instance, Bundaberg, home to the famous rum, sugar cane industry and the Mon Repos turtles, is little more than an hour's drive away.</p> <p>Maryborough, one of Queensland's most historic towns, is also a short trip, while further south, you can take in the natural beauty of the Great Sandy National Park with its massive dunes, wide ocean beaches and towering cliffs.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839400/the-great-sandy-national-park-is-a-fantastic-spot-for-grey-nomads-to-explore.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/9fb6f28f80bd4debb7c14058e118cbeb" /></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>The Great Sandy National Park is a fantastic spot for grey nomads to explore</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"> <p>Fraser Shores residents can utilise onsite recreational vehicle, caravan and boat storage, while also knowing their home will be in a safe and secure environment when they leave to go on their travel adventures.</p> <p>The villages are also close to a commercial and professional centre, housing medical specialists, a large general medical practice and a wide variety of shops and services. The new state-of-the-art St Stephen’s Hospital is also just down the road.</p> <p><strong>Conclusion</strong></p> <p>Given the above, it’s no surprise that so many over 50s are making the move north to Queensland.</p> <p>In fact, during 2018-19, Queensland’s over 50 population swelled by 6,970 - more than any other State - thanks to interstate migration. At the same time, Victoria’s over 50 population dropped by 650 due to interstate migration.</p> <p>Fraser Shores Retirement Villages embody quality, resort-style living among a friendly and like-minded community, in an attractive coastal environment which is the envy of the rest of Australia.</p> <p>To make an inquiry about Fraser Shores,<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.frasershores.com.au/" target="_blank">click here</a>.</strong></p> <p><strong><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839399/the-mini-golf-course-and-full-sized-bowling-green-at-fraser-shores.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/770aad7d1a1746aeb75ec801257f0d66" /></strong></p> <div style="text-align: center;"><em>The mini-golf course and full-sized bowling green at Fraser Shores</em></div> <div style="text-align: left;"><em><span>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.frasershores.com.au/" target="_blank">Fraser Shores. </a></span></em></div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div> </div>

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First tour of the stunning new downsizing project set around a historic mansion

<p dir="ltr"><em>The Rosemorran mansion is the centrepiece of a retirement living project on Sydney's upper north shore.</em></p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Many of the grand homes which once lined the Pacific Highway north of Sydney have sadly since been demolished for redevelopment.</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">This is hardly surprising, given these mansions are expensive to maintain due to their size and age and are sitting on large blocks which attract speculative developers.</p> <p dir="ltr">But one mansion still holds pride of place in this historic corridor.</p> <p dir="ltr">What’s more, this mansion is now emerging as the centrepiece of a luxury 33-dwelling retirement living project. </p> <p dir="ltr"><a rel="noopener" href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/premiere-projects" target="_blank">OverSixty.com.au</a> enjoyed a tour of the renovated mansion, and the new retirement living apartments behind it, ahead of the formal opening of the Rose by Moran project early in 2021.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>About Rose by Moran - and Rosemorran</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">The<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="http://rosebymoran.com.au/" target="_blank">Rose by Moran project</a><span> </span></strong>is framed around Rosemorran, a Federation-era mansion which was thought to have been built around 1914.</p> <p dir="ltr">This locally listed heritage item, in the Sydney upper north shore suburb of Wahroonga, appears to have been used as a family home for most of its life, most recently by Marc and Lindy De Stoop who purchased it in 2003.</p> <p dir="ltr">At a time when many other stately homes along the Pacific Highway were being targeted for demolition and redevelopment, the De Stoops had a vision to retain and renovate the mansion and make it the centrepiece of a downsizing development.</p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839388/downsizing-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/4083640c48634f04a951438be4f04064" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><em>The music room inside the renovated Rosemorran mansion</em></p> <p dir="ltr">The good news is that the mansion’s renovation is now complete, meaning that for the first time since it was built the general public can get a glimpse of its stunning interior.</p> <p dir="ltr">The building is a veritable time capsule of the best of the Federation period.</p> <p dir="ltr">Upon entering the mansion, you’ll find a wide corridor, with a decorative archway and grand original cedar staircase. On the ground floor, visitors have the option to explore a library, music room, medical consulting room and hair salon, along with a staff office.</p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839387/downsizing-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/be1232720a46489d8ddd4e50101a29a6" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><em>The entry hallway to the Rosemorran mansion</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Behind these rooms, you’ll find a spacious dining and gathering area, known as the club room, alongside a communal kitchen which can be used by caterers or residents. It’s the perfect spot for resident events and celebratory group dinners.</p> <p dir="ltr"><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px; display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839386/downsizing-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/90a3b79cb753407aabb518c6a43c27ae" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><em>The club room in the renovated Rosemorran mansion</em></p> <p dir="ltr">The mansion’s second storey includes two apartments, both with their own generous verandahs with original carved timber balustrades.</p> <p dir="ltr">Throughout the mansion, you’ll find soaring ceilings and original marble fireplaces, bay window seats, chandeliers, ceiling roses and stained glass windows. </p> <p dir="ltr">The port hole stained glass windows in particular add a sense of colour, whimsy and surprise as you turn corners and explore spaces.</p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839385/downsizing-4.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/878aa789142c4ea091c3571c6fd2b108" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><em>Some of the stunning stained glass windows you'll find in the Rosemorran mansion</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Despite the heat outside, the mansion itself is cool. This is hardly surprisingly, given that Federation homes - unlike the Victorian era homes before them - were specifically built to respond to the harsh Australian climate.</p> <p dir="ltr">This sense of calm and coolness is reinforced by the mansion’s interior design, which was overseen by Coco Republic and includes light, sympathetic colours, high-backed fabric sofas and ornate mirrors.</p> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Apartments and communal facilities built behind mansion</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">The rear of the mansion opens out to the new two and three bedroom apartments and further communal facilities. This new section of the project is contained within a building up to five storeys high, which was being finalised at the time of <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/premiere-projects" target="_blank">OverSixty.com.au</a>'s visit. </p> <p dir="ltr">These eye-opening contemporary communal spaces include a temperature-controlled wine cellar which can be used by all guests (including a tasting table) and a boutique cinema with ten generous and comfortable seats.</p> <p dir="ltr">Future residents will also be able to access a pool, spa, gym, sauna, men’s workshop and sport’s bar. </p> <p dir="ltr">The retirement village will be managed by Provectus Care, a company founded by Dr Shane Moran from the well-known Moran family (which has operated hospitals, aged care and seniors living facilities in Australia over the last 60 years). Dr Moran worked closely with the De Stoops to secure planning approval and turn the project’s vision to reality.</p> <p dir="ltr">Sally Taylor, who is the Rose by Moran project director within Provectus Care, said the spacious elements of the mansion have also underpinned the design philosophy of the new apartments.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Our brand new apartments have been designed to provide a sense of light and spaciousness,” Ms Taylor said. "We’ve done this by ensuring they have high ceilings, large expanses of glass doors which lead out to external under-cover outdoor living areas, wide hallways and extensive storage. The apartments also feature fireplaces, quality Miele appliances, chef-style kitchens, engineered oak flooring throughout the living spaces and wool-carpeted bedrooms. All of these features serve to emphasise the premium, quality retirement living option we are providing as the benchmark in the upper north shore.”</em></p> <p dir="ltr"><em><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px; display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839384/downsizing-5.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/d3777af371854d4e9681e574c7d10408" /></em></p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><em>Artist's impression of a completed new apartment at Rose by Moran</em></p> <p dir="ltr">Ms Taylor said the refurbished Rosemorran mansion was both a functional and sentimental drawcard for the village.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>The importance of the connection of our residents to the heritage mansion is paramount to their confidence and assurance in moving from their large family homes into a new, contemporary apartment,” Ms Taylor said. "Our residents have the opportunity to continue to utilise and enjoy large, grand spaces in the mansion without the maintenance and ongoing work required in keeping a large family home.”</em></p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><em><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7839383/downsizing-6.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/c8bc713916594426be08ea35ec589865" /></em></p> <p style="text-align: center;" dir="ltr"><em>Artist's impression of an apartment at Rose by Moran</em></p> <div class="track-link-news"> <div class="article-body"> <p dir="ltr"><strong>Find out more</strong></p> <p dir="ltr">There are still apartments available at the Rose by Moran project.</p> <p dir="ltr">It’s located just south of Wahroonga train station and shops, along with being around five minutes drive to Sydney Adventist Hospital, ten minutes drive to Westfield Hornsby and 38 minutes from the Sydney CBD.</p> <p dir="ltr">Available apartments range in prices from $900,000 to $2.1m, with a deferred management fee applying. </p> <p dir="ltr">Find out more at the<span> </span><strong><a rel="noopener" href="http://rosebymoran.com.au/" target="_blank">Rose by Moran website</a></strong>.  </p> <p dir="ltr"><em>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with <a rel="noopener" href="http://rosebymoran.com.au/" target="_blank">The Rose by Moran</a>.</em></p> </div> </div>

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Meet the downsizers flocking to Sydney’s surprise retirement hotspot

<p><strong>Sue Eaton moved to Sydney’s Thornton Park retirement living project to meet new friends and to feel a sense of belonging and community.</strong></p> <p>And Lorraine and Robert Greig became Thornton Park residents after seeing the size and style of  the project’s 48 newly-built apartments.</p> <p>These are just some of the residents who’ve moved into <strong><a href="https://www.thorntonpark.com.au/">Southern Cross Care’s Thornton Park retirement living project at Penrith</a></strong>, in Sydney’s west.</p> <p><em><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838731/downsizing-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/13f9c51f60b04ca0bf924ba301e5ca73" /></em></p> <p><em>Sue Eaton has enjoyed the resident interaction since moving into Thornton Park</em></p> <p>Thornton Park is a small-scale independent retirement living project, featuring a mix of one, two and three bedroom apartments.</p> <p>The low-rise Thornton Park project is set on a quiet tree-lined street among modern family homes, yet at the same time is on the doorstep of the hustle and bustle of the Penrith CBD.</p> <p>While Thornton Park’s first residents have moved in, <strong><a href="https://www.thorntonpark.com.au/">a limited number of apartments remain available for sale</a></strong>.</p> <p><strong>Meet the neighbours</strong></p> <p><strong>Sue Eaton</strong> watched Thornton Park being built, as her children live near the project.</p> <p>“I looked at a few places before I moved to Thornton Park, just to check out my options – but everything else was just like big blocks of units,” Ms Eaton said.</p> <p>“The apartments here are so nice – very spacious. Every time I walk inside I think, ‘I love my home.’</p> <p>“The main benefit for me has been the interaction.</p> <p>"When we were in the middle of lockdowns due to the pandemic, I’d catch up with one of my neighbours – who’s become a good friend, and we’d take a couple of the older ladies for a walk, since their families couldn’t visit.</p> <p>"When I lived on my own I was much more isolated."</p> <p><strong>Lorraine and Robert Greig</strong> had not considered retirement living, before they heard about Thornton Park.</p> <p>“We thought we’d be in our home until the end,” Ms Greig said.</p> <p>“That was until a friend of mine was going to Thornton Park to have a look and asked if we'd like to come with her.</p> <p>“As soon as I walked in and saw the bright, spacious apartments, I said to my husband, ‘I could live here.”</p> <p><img style="width: 0px; height: 0px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838730/downsizing-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/8811303ad51249afb188f4f8fa452b6b" /></p> <p><em>Lounge room of a new apartment at Thornton Park</em></p> <p>Ms Greig said she and her husband felt comfortable from the moment they moved in.</p> <p>“It wasn’t just the building itself, which is lovely – or the style and the size of our unit, which I love - It’s the social aspect as well,” Ms Greig said.</p> <p><em><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838729/downsizing-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/65f5a26be0074c82a2b2395c344af16d" /></em></p> <p><em>Lorraine and Robert Greig were impressed with the spacious apartments at Thornton Park</em></p> <p>“It’s so nice knowing that as part of a community, we’ll always have someone to talk to.</p> <p>“It wasn’t like that at home, where things were much more quiet - the kids were working and we were often on our own.</p> <p>"One of the other things that really puts my mind at ease is that if Rob or I got sick, or our circumstances changed, there’s an aged care facility about two seconds away – it’s brand new and lovely."</p> <p><strong>Penrith a downsizing hotspot</strong></p> <p>Penrith, the suburb in which Thornton Park is located, is something of a surprise and growing downsizing hotspot.</p> <p>Penrith was the seventh most searched suburb in NSW on Downsizing.com.au in 2019-20, up from eighth position the year before.</p> <p>This makes Penrith more popular than other well-known coastal sea change and downsizing locations such as Wollongong, Ballina and Tweed Heads. There are good reasons why this is the case.</p> <p>Penrith is the gateway to the Blue Mountains, giving local residents easy access to a natural wonderland and a series of quaint mountain villages. Penrith is also home to the Nepean River, a regional aquatic playground.</p> <p><em><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838728/downsizing-4.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/24c3abbf42844d15b43686d3a6ab9a54" /></em></p> <p><em>Penrith's Nepean River</em></p> <p>As part of the Great River Walk, almost eight kilometres of walking track have been created along the river, including resting points and lookouts where you can see birds and other wildlife.</p> <p>Penrith also has a growing arts and cultural scene, with the centrepiece being the Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre.</p> <p>This regional facility has a 660 seat concert hall, 380 seat drama theatre, 100 seat multi-purpose hall and more than 25 purpose-built rooms for music classes.</p> <p>Penrith also has great shopping, a variety of award-winning cafes, restaurants, pubs and clubs and many other places to visit including the Sydney International Regatta Centre and Western Sydney University Observatory. Find out more at <strong><a href="https://www.visitpenrith.com.au/">Visit Penrith</a></strong>.</p> <p><strong>About the apartments</strong></p> <p>Thornton Park includes a range of spacious one, two and three-bedroom apartments.</p> <p>All apartments have a study nook or full study and include contemporary, open plan living spaces that lead onto generous balconies.</p> <p><em><img style="width: 0px; height: 0px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838727/downsizing-5.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/f486ccd465494980a96a2616148296d9" /></em></p> <p><em>Thornton Park apartment balcony area</em></p> <p>The apartments feature beautiful wood, stone and textured floor coverings, complemented by high‑end European fixtures and appliances.</p> <p><img style="width: 0px; height: 0px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838726/downsizing-6.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/2c04d86a69014305bcefc28d7e53e2ae" /></p> <p><em>Kitchen, living and dining area in a Thornton Park apartment</em></p> <p>Thornton Park’s apartments are also cleverly designed with excellent soundproofing between rooms and apartments.</p> <p>Residents have access to a cafe serving coffee and light meals, along with a hairdressing and beauty salon, library, media room, multi-purpose community centre and a rooftop barbecue terrace and hobby garden.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838725/downsizing-7.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/953a166c248a4553897f87709563b158" /></p> <p><em>Library at Thornton Park</em></p> <p>As an added benefit, Thornton Park provides retirement living residents with on-site concierge services and an hour of domestic assistance per fortnight. Optional home care services are also available.</p> <p>It’s also important to note that Thornton Park’s new independent living retirement village apartments are located alongside a new 100-suite state-of-the-art residential care home.</p> <p>This is particularly convenient when one partner needs to move into full-time care, while the other can continue to live independently in an adjacent retirement village apartment.</p> <p><strong>Find out more</strong></p> <p>Thornton Park is a relaxing retirement oasis that feels a world away, yet is within walking distance of all that a cosmopolitan centre like Penrith has to offer.</p> <p><em><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838724/downsizing-8.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/6a487ed61e6543bf83233a48aca26f4b" /></em></p> <p><em>This aerial photo was taken from the roof of Thornton Park and shows how it is close to  everything Penrith has on offer</em></p> <p>Apartment prices start at $495,000, with a deferred management fee applying.</p> <p>For a limited time, buyers can also take advantage of an early bird offer, made up of a complimentary whitegoods package including a fridge, microwave, washing machine and dryer, valued at $4,300.</p> <p><span><em>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.thorntonpark.com.au/" target="_blank">Thornton Park.</a></em></span></p>

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Huge drop in prostate cancer testing a big concern for Aussie men

<p>Professor Tony Costello, a pioneer in mens prostate cancer treatment after performing the first open radical prostatectomy using robotic surgery in Australia in 2003, fears a dramatic increase in prostate cancer as testing levels bottom out with COVID-19 restrictions and delayed treatment. </p> <p>In the past six months PSA testing in Australia - a crucial marker for prostate cancer - has fallen dramatically by more than 15 percent, with a similar drop in the number of biopsies carried out compared to the same time period in 2019. </p> <p>Urologist Professor Tony Costello and Clinical Advisor of Maxwell Plus (maxwellplus.com) said many GPs are following current guidelines and not proactively discussing prostate cancer with patients, so many men are unaware they could be at risk. </p> <p>“Often doctors will only discuss prostate cancer when a patient specifically asks for testing and even then may advise against it - meaning too many Australian men are not being diagnosed with the fatal disease until it’s too late,” said Prof Costello. </p> <p>“If men have a blood test in their 40s to get a baseline PSA and then annually from the age of 50 they will have the best chance of detecting prostate cancer early,” he said. </p> <p>“Prostate cancer is the most common cancer diagnosed in Australian men, claiming nearly 3,500 lives last year, more than breast cancer, because of late diagnosis.” </p> <p>Maxwell Plus Founder and CEO Elliot Smith said doctors are embracing telehealth technology to help manage their patients’ risk of prostate cancer, especially during covid when people are reluctant to visit their GP unless it is an emergency. </p> <p>“We are also able to better serve rural and regional Australia - where men have a 21 percent higher mortality rate than men in capital cities.” </p> <p>“Ultimately, what we’re aiming to achieve is that every man who ends up with prostate cancer is diagnosed early enough that all options are in front of him, and men don’t need to go through unnecessary testing,” said Mr Smith. </p>

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Are you looking for love or friendship in an over 50s community?

<p class="p1"><em><strong>The heart-warming story of two downsizers who fell in love and then started a new life together in a retirement village has prompted OverSixty.com.au and Downsizing.com.au to launch a survey about romance and friendship in over 50s communities.</strong></em></p> <p class="p1">David and Anthea Yates, both in their early 70s, married in February 2020 and in the same month moved from their homes in the regional centre of Waikerie to Stockland Hillsview retirement village in Happy Valley, south of Adelaide.</p> <p class="p1">David and Anthea met around two years ago, after David - as a local men’s shed volunteer - helped Anthea move into her home at Waikerie. David had joined the men’s shed after the passing of his previous wife.</p> <p class="p1">“It blossomed into a love affair,” said David.</p> <p class="p1">The couple decided to get married, have their honeymoon and move into a retirement village - all in the same month. </p> <p class="p1">David and Anthea had several reasons to make their move, including to find better weather, be closer to family, meet new friends, reduce home maintenance and simply to leave the past behind.</p> <p class="p1">“We’ve both had heartaches during our lives and we needed to move away to be able to ease the hurt and the memories...not to completely forget but to ease the pain, and to start a new life together,” David said.</p> <p class="p1">For Anthea, it was important that she moved closer to her daughter and grandsons, and also meet new friends in a like-minded community.</p> <p class="p1">“I found that, in a small and very close community (such as Waikerie), and as someone who was a retiree who didn’t take children to school, that it was hard to meet people,” Anthea said.</p> <p class="p1">“I enjoy living here in the retirement village where everyone is in a similar age group and friendly.”</p> <p class="p1"><strong>Fill out our survey:</strong></p> <p class="p1"><em>OverSixty.com.au and Downsizing.com.au have <a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2ZTNXG8">launched a survey on the subject</a>.  </em></p>

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Future proof your home so you never have to move

<p> Retirement is an ideal time to prepare for the next fulfilling season of our lives – and one of the most important decisions to make is whether to stay in the home you’ve grown to love, or move on. Don’t make that call until you’ve considered all the options.</p> <p><strong>By Over60, in partnership with RESiLIFT</strong></p> <p>Retirement is an ideal time to prepare for the next fulfilling season of our lives – and one of the most important decisions to make is whether to stay in the home you’ve grown to love, or move on. Don’t make that call until you’ve considered all the options.</p> <p>There are many factors that play into such a major life decision – proximity to the grandchildren, how connected you are to the local community, or even how physically challenging navigating a large house can become after a while.</p> <p>But one thing is for sure: you no longer have to leave your two-storey home just because of the stairs.</p> <p>That’s right; what may have been an insurmountable barrier for many of us a decade ago is no longer, thanks to <a href="http://www.resilift.com.au/">RESiLIFT</a>.</p> <p>RESiLIFT is a residential lift that can be easily installed into existing or new homes. The clever Australian design was the first of its type in the world, pioneering shaftless lifts. It allows people to live in the homes they love without breaking the bank or making a massive impact on their building structures.</p> <p>Louisa King, who works as an occupational therapist, says a person’s home is “often part of their identity” and making the right decision for their home is key.</p> <p>“Making a move is not an easy task,” she says. “Especially if you are downsizing or worse, moving when you are not well. There is only a limited window for people to make this decision.</p> <p>“Ideally in their 60s or early 70s, people weigh up their options and implement their decision before the task becomes too big and decisions are made for them.”</p> <p>As life goes on, it’s important for seniors to be adequately prepared for the future. Thankfully, taking precautions in your home and preparing for the future doesn’t mean you have to move to a smaller, one-storey property as staying in the home you love is now possible for an affordable price. Thanks to RESiLIFT, seniors are able to provide themselves with the best provisions for their future.</p> <p>Lyn from Gisborne, Victoria, could not have been more pleased with the timing of her RESiLIFT installation. “I broke my leg just before Christmas,” she says. “Having the lift was a God-send. On the other hand, my girlfriend broke her ankle very badly and had to have an ankle fusion. Their home has very steep stairs and no bathroom downstairs. Without a lift, it was a nightmare.”</p> <p><img style="width: 0px; height: 0px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838019/resilift-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/6407b5b375e849d596086eb0f8895544" /></p> <p> </p> <p>Created by Peter van Emmerik – when he himself was retired and in his mid-60s – RESiLIFT was conceived to be the first “through-floor” residential lift, and it allows people to live in the homes they love without breaking the bank or making a massive impact on their building structures.</p> <p>As many of us who are in retirement know full well, life does not slow down in the slightest – and Peter understood the importance of wanting to stay in your beloved residence without having to sacrifice comfort and safety, or cause a huge dent in life savings.</p> <p>Peter’s award-winning product means people are able to have a residential lift that carries them to where they need to go – whether that be from their lounge room to their front door or from their bedroom to the garage.</p> <p>Thanks to his incredible efforts, homeowners are able to have endless options.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838018/resilift-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/e8dc0bfaf8c64175b48a779a52779961" /></p> <p>Tax agent George Dimitropoulos says he had a RESiLIFT installed in his parent’s home and was “pleasantly surprised by the price and the ease of getting the work done.”</p> <p>“Installing a lift is a justified financial decision,” he says.</p> <p>“The full cost of installing a RESiLIFT in my parents’ home, including building works, was $35,000 all up. If they were to have downsized, aside from the potential impact this can have on people’s pensions, the stamp duty alone is astronomical.</p> <p>“For a $700,000 value home you are looking at $37,000 in stamp duty – and for a million-dollar property the stamp duty is $55,000.”</p> <p>Quite apart from the financial benefits, installing a RESiLIFT is quick and easy, “with no loss of lifestyle,” adds George. “My parents did not have to move from the family home and experience the trauma associated with that process.”</p> <p>Peter says that designing RESiLIFT for retirees means they do not have to leave or sacrifice their house for safety and security.</p> <p>“I designed this lift so people could stay safely in the home they love,” he says. “It saves time, effort and money that would otherwise be wasted moving home. It also removes the emotional anguish of being uprooted from your family home.”</p> <p>RESiLIFT is a smart and affordable solution that doesn’t require seniors to make the jump from their beloved home to a smaller, one-floor property just because they are not as agile as they used to be.</p> <p>Jegi Jager, an architect for CPS Project Management, says retrofitting a lift into your home “really makes sense. This is the future. I would never build or plan a two-storey home without a lift.”</p> <p>RESiLIFT rolls affordability, safety and quality all into one, explains Jegi, adding that he was further encouraged to use RESiLIFT as it is a “genuine Australian product”.</p> <p>An investment into a RESiLIFT not only offers the comfort of moving about effortlessly within your own home, but allows for a future free of worry. It also gives the same peace of mind to anyone else who might take on your home one day, making it an affordable, Australian-designed and built asset that can only add to the value of your property.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="https://oversixtydev.blob.core.windows.net/media/7838017/resilift-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/e0d9e5b6dbde48cb945970696f7fb20d" /></p> <p>“It’s such a relief!” says Margot Ling (pictured above) of her own RESiLIFT, which she had installed in her own house two years ago. “Now I know we can stay in our home! We love it!”</p> <p>To find out more about future-proofing your home with a RESiLIFT, visit <a href="http://www.resilift.com.au/">www.resilift.com.au</a></p> <p><em>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with <a href="http://www.resilift.com.au/">RESiLIFT</a>.</em></p> <p> </p>

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“Hunk of junk”: Mum’s overly honest caravan ad has internet in stitches

<p>Glastonbury mum Katie Perkins has obviously had enough of the 27-year-old caravan taking up space on her property.</p> <p>So, in a fit of fury, she took to Facebook Marketplace to try and find a prospective buyer – but soon turned her post into an opportunity to vent a bit of pent-up rage at the “monstrosity” that had been plaguing her for so long.</p> <p>The UK woman was definitely a little too honest in her expletive-laden ad, and the post quickly went viral due to her astonishingly blunt descriptions.</p> <p>“It is a tin shed on wheels,” she wrote.</p> <p>“It is f***ing hot in the summer. It is f***ing freezing in the winter. It even grows icicles on the inside.”</p> <p>She adds that the oven and fridge are equally rubbish, but the microwave is “pretty decent.”</p> <p>“Get this hunk of junk off my f***ing land,” she pleads.</p> <p>“I’d love to say it’s beautiful, but I’d be lying. I’d love to say I loved living in it, but I’d be lying.”</p> <p>The listing has been shared more than 1,000 times and racked up hundreds of comments as people commended her for the refreshing honesty, calling it the “best ad ever”.</p> <p>Check out the images of the caravan in the gallery below, and here also is the full (slightly cleaned up) post in all its glory:</p> <p>“YES IT'S STILL AVAILABLE - I WILL. REMOVE ONCE IT HAS GONE.</p> <p>IT IS AN ANCIENT 27 YEAR OLD CARAVAN. 32FT x 10FT, 2 BED STATIC.</p> <p>IT HAS BEEN LIVED IN BY A FAMILY OF 7 (WE WERE A FAMILY OF 4 🤰⚠️) FOR 7 YEARS ONSITE WHILST BUILDING OUR DREAM HOME, WHICH TURNED INTO A F***ING NIGHTMARE.</p> <p>IT IS NOT PRISTINE.</p> <p>IT IS NOT PRETTY.</p> <p>IT IS A TIN SHED ON WHEELS.</p> <p>IT IS F***ING HOT IN THE SUMMER.</p> <p>IT IS F***ING FREEZING IN THE WINTER.</p> <p>IT EVEN GROWS ICICLES ON THE INSIDE. IT COULD DO WITH FULL REPLACEMENT OF CARPETS.</p> <p>IT NEEDS A GOOD BLEACH CLEAN THROUGHOUT.</p> <p>IT HAS A SHIT OVEN.</p> <p>IT HAS A SHIT HOB.</p> <p>IT HAS A SHIT FRIDGE.</p> <p>KIDS WERE POTTY TRAINED IN IT.</p> <p>DOG WAS POTTY TRAINED IN IT.</p> <p>IT HAS BEEN USED AS STORAGE FOR THE LAST 9 MONTHS.</p> <p>NEXT STOP THE F***ING CHICKENS ARE GOING IN IT.</p> <p>IT DOES HAVE A PRETTY DECENT MICROWAVE, ALBEIT CHEAP MORRISONS ONE.</p> <p>IT ALSO HAS EXTRAS!</p> <p>COUPLE OLD SHOES IN THE WARDROBE.</p> <p>ABSTRACT ART, ONE OF A KIND, COURTESY OF THE CHILDREN.</p> <p>OLD BOTTLES OF BOOZE UNDER THE SINK.</p> <p>PRETTY SURE THERE'S EVEN A SLOW COOKER THAT WAS ONLY USED ONCE?</p> <p>BEDS THAT HAVE BEEN DESTROYED AND I CANNOT BE F***ED TO REMOVE.</p> <p>I’M SURE IF YOU ARE LOOKING AT IT YOU CAN USE IT FOR SOMETHING, I DON'T GIVE A F**K WHAT.</p> <p>I WANT OFFERS.....I DON'T EXPECT ALOT BUT SOMETHING WOULD BE NICE.</p> <p>F**K IT - IF YOU TRUELY WANT THIS F***ING MONSTROSITY THEN I WILL TRADE IT FOR A COUPLE BOXES OF HUBBY'S FAVOURITE RED WINE - JAMMY RED ROO OR JAM SHED.</p> <p>GET THIS HUNK OF JUNK OFF MY F***ING LAND.</p> <p>I'D LOVE TO SAY IT'S F***ING BEAUTIFUL, BUT I'D BE LYING.</p> <p>I'D LOVE TO SAY I LOVED LIVING IN IT, BUT I'D BE LYING.</p> <p>I'D LOVE TO SAY I'D LOOK FORWARD TO A CARAVAN HOLIDAY, BUT GUESS WHAT...?</p> <p>I'D BE LYING.”</p> <p>… and if you’re still game to read the real thing, take a deep breath, be warned, and click <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.facebook.com/marketplace/item/332595611252474/" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p><strong>Images:</strong> Facebook Marketplace</p>

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Meet the couple who moved into a new retirement village apartment...without visiting it first

<p><span>A decision by a NSW couple to buy a retirement village apartment - without physically inspecting it first - has illustrated how COVID-19 has transformed the downsizing real estate market.<br /><br /></span><span>In late June 2020, John and Rosemary Gooch moved 500km from Mudgee in the NSW central-west to <a href="https://www.downsizing.com.au/property/sale/11035/queens-lake-retirement-village">Stockland Queens Lake</a> at Laurieton on the State’s mid-north coast.<br /><br /></span><span>Although Ms Gooch knew the Laurieton area well, having previously lived near there, neither she or her husband had actually been inside their future one and half bedroom apartment.<br /><br /></span><span>A Stockland salesperson gave the couple several online tours on her mobile phone, and also helped by taking measurements of key areas.<br /><br /></span><span>“I’d looked at the apartment so many times (online), I knew it backwards,” Ms Gooch said. “I knew every room, every little bit, so we knew it was going to be good.<br /><br /></span><span>“The sales person did a video of it, and walked us through, and we had a floor plan. Because we had seen it so much, we knew how beautiful it was.<br /><br /></span><span>“When we actually arrived, it was actually better than what we thought. It is bigger than what we thought, it is a beautiful location and it’s quiet.”<br /><br /></span><span>Dea Gardner, sales professional at Queens Lake Retirement Village, said it was important to make the customer feel comfortable and confident when making the big decision to move, especially when it comes to downsizing. <br /><br /></span><span>“I just kept in regular contact and made sure I had a lot of information to help them (the Goochs) understand any concerns or questions they had,” Ms Gardner said. <br /><br /></span><span>“I made myself available to them entirely, having several conversations on what from their furnishings would or wouldn’t fit, and happily took measurements for them so they knew as much information as possible before moving. I think this relieved a lot of their stresses.” <br /><br /></span><span>The Goochs said they were happy to make the purchase after taking part in virtual tours, given this meant they avoided a 500km trip during a time of COVID-19 restrictions. The couple purchased the apartment for $245,000.<br /><br /></span><span>More retirement living operators are turning to virtual tours and open days to market their properties, either in response to government restrictions or because potential buyers may be keen to avoid travelling.<br /><br /></span><span>Downsizing.com.au has <a href="https://www.downsizing.com.au/news/739/New-online-events-promotion-is-the-key-to-sales-success-with-downsizers">launched a new initiative</a> which supports clients being able to showcase virtual tours and online events, along with traditional in-person events.<br /><br /></span><strong><span>Find out more information about the </span></strong><span><a href="https://www.downsizing.com.au/property/sale/11035/queens-lake-retirement-village"><strong>Queens Lake retirement village here.</strong></a></span></p>

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“They’re not retirement villages”: How you can keep active and save money in a Hometown over 50s community

<p>When Queensland couple Fiona and Rick Lodge made the decision to downsize earlier this year, they were keen to find a new home which would allow them to cherish the great outdoors and lead an active lifestyle.</p> <p>After all, Fiona, 62, and Rick, 74, love to spend time in the sun and be active and healthy.</p> <p>In fact, in the lead-up to a major event, this super-fit couple would be likely to cover nearly 400km in a single week, either through running, riding their bikes or swimming. </p> <p>Fiona and Rick have both run marathons and, in 2018, Fiona represented Australia in the 55-59 age group in the ITU World Championships Olympic Distance Triathlon<strong>.</strong></p> <p>“All through our lives, we have always done some kind of physical activity,” Fiona said. “There wouldn’t be a day we don’t exercise.”</p> <p>“However, where we used to live in Brisbane, it got a bit boring running past houses and the local road system could be a bit dangerous and the environment not terribly healthy. </p> <p>“We wanted to find a new home and community where we could enjoy a great outdoor coastal environment, and also help financially set up our retirement.”</p> <p><strong>Fiona and Rick moved into a Hometown Australia land lease community</strong></p> <p>Fiona and Rick decided to shift to <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/qld/moreton-bay/orianna-sandstone-point/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia’s Orianna community</a> located at Sandstone Point in the Moreton Bay region, north of Brisbane.</p> <p>With its slow-paced coastal location, and an abundance of recreational facilities, Orianna is the perfect location for active and healthy over 50s.</p> <p>As Fiona points out: “It is close to the water and beach, with lots of great scenery, which is great for running and being outdoors.”</p> <p>Located just 100m from the edge of the Bribie Island Passage, Orianna has an outdoor fully heated pool and bowling green, along with a cinema, clubhouse, BBQ area, games room, gymnasium and wellness centre. </p> <p>Similar active lifestyle features are also available in many of the <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/communities" target="_blank">48 residential land lease communities operated by Hometown Australia</a> across Queensland, NSW and South Australia.</p> <p><strong>Hometown land lease communities ideal for an active lifestyle</strong></p> <p>Land lease communities are growing in popularity across Australia, in part because they are attracting active and younger downsizers.</p> <p>Unlike retirement villages laws in a number of States, you don’t actually need to be retired to enter a Hometown Australia land lease community. </p> <p>As a result, these communities are attracting an increasing number of people in their 50s and 60s who are either in the early stages of retirement, or transitioning to retirement. Some residents are actually still working part-time or full-time, while living in the community. </p> <p>Given the younger age profile, incoming residents tend to be more active than those in retirement villages. This helps create a more vibrant social and community atmosphere, where people are often out and about around the community.</p> <p>As Fiona says: “People have to look at these communities with an open mind, and not think of them as retirement villages. They are all new and modern, lots of facilities, and you don’t have to be in your 60s and 70s to move into them.” </p> <p><strong>Hometown land lease communities help save you money</strong></p> <p>Another reason that land lease communities attract younger downsizers is because they offer financial incentives which allow people to retire early. </p> <p>Under the land lease model, buyers purchase a dwelling and then benefit from a secure, long-term ground lease for this dwelling with Hometown Australia. Because no land is actually being purchased, buyers don’t have to pay stamp duty or ongoing council rates.</p> <p>For Fiona and Rick, this means they have avoided a $7,175 stamp duty bill and around $950 in annual council rates, which would have applied if they had bought a general home in the same area for the same amount.</p> <p>In addition, because of the ground lease arrangement, and because Rick is an aged pensioner, the couple are eligible to claim rent assistance via the <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/rent-assistance/how-much-you-can-get#a1" target="_blank">Commonwealth Rent Assistance </a>scheme, to offset their monthly site fees. </p> <p><strong>Hometown land lease communities have great and affordable homes</strong></p> <p>Importantly, Hometown land lease communities also allow buyers to move into a range of attractive lifestyle-rich locations, at an affordable price.</p> <p>Many of these communities are located in some of Australia’s best-known coastal holiday spots, including Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, Moreton Bay and Gold Coast regions, NSW’s Mid-North, North Coast and Port Stephens regions and South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula.</p> <p>Hometown community homes start at just $250,000, with most of these having two or three bedrooms, a study, and either 1.5 or two bathrooms. Homes in Orianna start from $379,000 (for a two-bedroom home with ensuite).</p> <p>The affordable price point of these homes allows many retirees to top up their retirement savings, after selling their family home and moving into a Hometown community.</p> <p>“By moving here, we were able to shift to a great coastal area and into a new house, but still be able to put away something for our retirement,” Fiona said.</p> <p>“We had a look at other houses in the local area, when we were weighing everything up, but we generally found the other houses were more expensive and needed a lot of work, that would have taken money from us.”</p> <p>Fiona and Rick purchased a three bedroom, two bathroom home with a double garage and spacious indoor and outdoor living areas. The home also features ceiling fans and air conditioning. </p> <p>The Lodges use the backyard for regular Sunday get-togethers with other Orianna residents.</p> <p>“We liked the idea of downsizing into a standalone house and a yard, where you are part of a great community but still have your own privacy. It ticked all our boxes,” Fiona said.</p> <p><strong>Find out more</strong></p> <p><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia’s new website</a> allows potential buyers to easily search communities across Australia and see what facilities and homes they offer. </p> <p>The details of the community manager are listed alongside each community, allowing you to easily find out more information.</p> <ul> <li>SEE ALSO: <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/property/downsizing/how-moving-into-a-land-lease-community-can-help-you-retire-early" target="_blank">How moving into a land lease community can help you retire early</a></li> <li>SEE ALSO: <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/property/downsizing/discover-the-resort-like-over-50s-communities-helping-australia-s-grey-nomads-get-back-on-the-road" target="_blank">Discover the resort-like over 50s communities helping Australia’s ‘grey nomads’ get back on the road</a></li> </ul> <p><br /><em>Written by Mark Skelsey, this sponsored article is produced in partnership with <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia</a>.</em></p>

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Making the retirement dream a reality

<p>A spacious and light-filled apartment – with a view into the treetops – has helped deliver the perfect retirement lifestyle for Joy and Greg Newling.</p> <p>Eighteen months ago, Joy and Greg made the decision to downsize into a newly-built retirement village apartment at <a href="https://www.uniting.org/services/retirement-and-independent-living/facility/uniting-bowden-brae-normanhurst?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=article&amp;utm_campaign=bowdenbrae">Uniting Bowden Brae</a>. </p> <p>Apart from freeing up some capital for retirement, the couple also wanted to continue to live within northern Sydney and be able to entertain friends on a large balcony.  </p> <p>The Uniting Bowden Brae project at Normanhurst caught their eye. </p> <p>They were shown through a three bedroom plus two bathroom apartment with generous ceiling heights and large living spaces.</p> <p>The couple particularly loved the view through the huge windows into the treetops of the project’s green space.</p> <p>Soon after, Joy and Greg, who are in their 70s, moved in.</p> <p>“The move out of our old home in Wahroonga also meant we could sell the lawnmower for good, which I loved,” Greg said. “And the best thing is that we still have our independence, while enjoying strong community connections and support here.”</p> <p><strong>Additional homes under construction at Uniting Bowden Brae</strong></p> <p>Joy and Greg bought into the first stage of <a href="https://www.uniting.org/services/retirement-and-independent-living/facility/uniting-bowden-brae-normanhurst?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=article&amp;utm_campaign=bowdenbrae">Uniting Bowden Brae</a>. All 39 apartments in this stage have already been built, with only two remaining for sale.</p> <p>In addition, expressions of interest are now open for a further 101 apartments, which feature either two, two plus study or three bedrooms. These apartments, along with the project’s community facilities, are expected to be complete by mid-2021.</p> <p><span>Like the apartment purchased by the Newlings, these stage two apartments seek to provide generous living spaces, a flowing layout and high-quality finishes and appliances, including stone benchtops and a ceramic cooktop. Full-height glazed doors and windows are designed to bathe the homes in natural light, while the open plan living area and apartment courtyards and balconies will make it easy to entertain.</span></p> <p>Importantly, the apartments and the Uniting Bowden Brae project also include a range of features which will allow future residents to age-in-place.</p> <p>The apartments themselves will be constructed to be easily accessible by people with mobility limitations. For instance, the bathrooms will include zero-threshold shower recesses and a towel rack which doubles as a strong grab rail. </p> <p>A range of Uniting assisted living and home care services will be available to residents, including personal care, cleaning, gardening, transport and meal preparation. </p> <p>Uniting will also be able to help manage any clinical services residents may need, including nursing and allied health support.</p> <p>Finally, the new retirement village apartments will be located alongside an existing Uniting residential aged care facility, allowing apartment residents to move into this facility if their care needs change.</p> <p><strong>Extensive community facilities allow residents to enjoy the great outdoors</strong></p> <p>Meanwhile, the project’s extensive community facilities have been planned to encourage friendly interaction and healthy living.</p> <p>These facilities will include a café, gymnasium, indoor pool, library, consulting rooms, clubroom and communal dining and lounge areas. </p> <p>Residents will also be able to enjoy the project’s ‘Village Green’, a large landscaped area designed to link the apartments and community facilities and encourage community connection. </p> <p>Across the 1.38 hectare site, landscaped gardens will blend well-established trees with new plantings to provide a leafy canopy of shade. Residents can take full advantage of these shared spaces, without needing to maintain them.</p> <p>Two major hospitals are a stone’s throw from Uniting Bowden Brae, and there’s a large major supermarket just a 10-minute drive in either direction. Buses pass the village, and the railway station is less than a 10-minute walk away.</p> <p>The nearby suburb of Wahroonga boasts coffee shops and eateries, and all the essential services, such as banks, a post office and a railway station. </p> <p><strong>Newlings look forward to more neighbours</strong></p> <p>Joy and Greg Newling say they are looking forward to welcoming more residents into the Uniting Bowden Brae family.</p> <p>“We’ve met some fantastic neighbours here who share similar interests of ours, it’s really expanded our friendship circle in life moving here,” Greg says.</p> <p>The couple have always been active members of their local community, sitting on numerous committees over the years, and have already gained many friends at Uniting Bowden Brae.</p> <p>Joy didn’t hesitate to put up her hand to host a thankyou party when she stepped down as President of her local Rotary Club last year.</p> <p>More than 20 friends gathered in the living room of her new apartment to celebrate the occasion.</p> <p>“We opened up the big glass sliding doors onto the balcony so our friends could spill into our outdoor space,” Joy said. “We had people standing around here with drinks and finger food, it was great.”</p> <p>Making their own lifestyle decisions was important to the couple.</p> <p>Once they moved in, their son and daughter agreed that Joy and Greg had done the hard yards by taking matters into their own hands. </p> <p>“In some ways we felt too young for retirement living, but we also knew the time was right,” Greg said.</p> <p>“We had to make all the decisions on living arrangements for three of our parents, which wasn’t easy. The experience made us determined to make our own decisions that worked for us, and save our family from having to make those decisions.” </p> <p>Not one to rush their decision, they compared Uniting Bowden Brae with other properties on the market, including attending open homes, reading brochures and visiting other independent living villages.</p> <p>However, nothing compared to Uniting Bowden Brae, so they signed on the dotted line.</p> <p>The fact that the complex was run by Uniting sealed the deal. “We liked the attitude and knowledge of the sales staff that we met,” Greg said.</p> <p>Joy and Greg also take comfort in the fact that there’s a residential aged care facility on-site should they need it down the track.</p> <p>“Accessing this will be far easier from here than a private residence should the day come that we need it,” Greg said. </p> <p><em>With 100 years of experience providing accommodation and care for older Australians, you’re in expert hands with Uniting. For more information about the Uniting Bowden Brae, including to book a tour of our display apartment, please </em><a href="https://www.uniting.org/services/retirement-and-independent-living/facility/uniting-bowden-brae-normanhurst?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=article&amp;utm_campaign=bowdenbrae"><em>click here</em></a><strong><em>.</em></strong></p> <p><em>(Please note that a departure fee will apply when you leave the village)</em></p> <p><em>This is a sponsored article produced in partnership with </em><a href="https://www.uniting.org/services/retirement-and-independent-living/facility/uniting-bowden-brae-normanhurst?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=article&amp;utm_campaign=bowdenbrae"><em>United Browden Brae</em></a><em>. </em></p>

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How moving into a land lease community can help you retire early

<p><span>After working full-time since the age of 15, including two decades doing weekend and around-the-clock shift work, Geoff Ashton decided it was time for a change.</span></p> <p><span>“I was doing shift work seven days a week, at any time of day or night. I was about to turn 65, and the shift work was getting very difficult,” Geoff said.</span></p> <p><span>“What’s more, it was a pretty full-on job, and if something went wrong, it really went wrong.</span></p> <p><span>“I was keen to start thinking about life outside of work.”</span></p> <p><strong><span>Benefits of moving into a residential land lease community</span></strong></p> <p><span>For Geoff, a crucial part of making the transition to retirement involved moving into a <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia</a> residential land lease community at Port Stephens, in the NSW Lower Hunter region. </span></p> <p><span>In January 2020, Geoff and wife Deb moved into Hometown’s <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/nsw/port-stephens/sunrise-port-stephens/" target="_blank">Sunrise residential land lease community</a>, after selling their townhouse in nearby Nelson Bay. </span></p> <p><span>According to the couple, a key reason behind moving into Sunrise was that - unlike some retirement villages - it wasn’t strictly for retired people. </span></p> <p><span>This allows them to live at Sunrise while carrying out their transition to retirement plan, which involves working for at least two more years.</span></p> <p><span>Geoff has left his previous full-time job and is now working three days a week as a truck driver, while Deb works full-time in the disability care industry.</span></p> <p><span>Their <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/homes-for-sale/5686/seabreeze-" target="_blank">three-bedroom Seabreeze home</a> at Sunrise is also a key part of the transition planning. </span></p> <p><span>Compared to their former Nelson Bay townhouse, Geoff and Deb’s new home will provide more suitable accommodation as they get older. This is because it doesn’t have any internal stairs and is smaller and more manageable than the former townhouse. </span></p> <p><span>It also includes a dedicated office space, allowing Deb to occasionally work from home. </span></p> <p><span>Importantly, their new home also has a yard big enough for their two dogs, along with high-quality finishes and features including a covered outdoor entertaining area, walk-in wardrobes, stone kitchen benchtops and a double garage. </span></p> <p><span>As Sunrise community residents, Geoff and Deb also have access to fantastic and relaxing communal facilities including two new swimming pools, tennis and pickleball courts and a clubhouse, bowling green, community bus, cinema and library.</span></p> <p><span>“The whole reason we moved in here was so I could give up full-time work,” Geoff said.</span></p> <p><span>“For anybody that has full-time employment in our age group and wants to switch to work part-time, I fully recommend moving into a community like this.</span></p> <p><span>“In future years, we’re also hoping to do a bit of travel, and here at Sunrise we can park our camper in the hardstand area, which is another big advantage.”</span></p> <p><strong><span>More Australians than ever before transitioning to retirement</span></strong></p> <p><span>There are a number of major trends underway, which means more Australians than ever before are moving into Hometown Australia’s residential land lease communities, to allow them to either retire early, or to transition to retirement.</span></p> <p><span>For instance, due to the COVID-19 economic impacts, around 102,000 Australians aged 50-64 and a further 54,000 aged over 65 fell out of employment between February and May 2020. </span></p> <p><span>It’s predicted that a significant proportion of these people may have difficulty finding new work and may need to retire early.</span></p> <p><span>Already some 21 per cent of Australians who retire are forced into this situation <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/mf/6238.0" target="_blank">because of sickness or injury</a>, and a further 11 per cent because they were retrenched. </span></p> <p><span>What’s more, an increasing number of Australians in their 50s and 60s are also voluntarily moving from full-time to part-time work, as part of their retirement planning.</span></p> <p><span>Between 2005 and 2020, the number of people working part-time in the 55-64 age group jumped by 74 per cent, and by 249 per cent in the 65 plus age group. This compares with a part-time work growth rate of 43 per cent across all age groups during the same period.</span></p> <p><span>Many people in the above scenarios are - like Geoff and Deb - looking for the right sort of accommodation which helps meet their new circumstances.</span></p> <p><strong><span>Hometown land lease communities the perfect transition to retirement option</span></strong></p> <p><span>Hometown Australia operates just under 50 residential land lease communities containing around 10,000 residents across Queensland, New South Wales and South Australia.</span></p> <p><span>According to </span>Hometown Australia joint managing director and chief operating officer Stuart Strong, an increasing number of people entering his company’s communities are in the pre-retirement or early retirement phase.</p> <p><span>“The financial benefits of our residential land lease living model - along with the great lifestyle we offer - is very attractive to people in their 50s and 60s who are weighing up their retirement options,” Mr Strong said.</span></p> <p><span>Mr Strong said that, more often than not, people moving into a Hometown Australia community were able to top-up their retirement income, as the price of homes was usually below the median house price in the surrounding area.</span></p> <p><span>Mr Strong also said that residents in his communities didn’t have to pay stamp duty, nor council rates or exit fees, and retained their home’s capital gain.</span></p> <p><span>“This means a person looking to retire early can do so without the significant incoming and outgoing costs which apply to other over 50s housing models,” he said.</span></p> <p><span>Furthermore, once a Hometown Australia community resident reaches the pension age, or already claims a disability pension, it is possible they can also claim <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/individuals/services/centrelink/rent-assistance" target="_blank">Commonwealth rental assistance</a> (which is up to $139 a fortnight per couple).</span></p> <p><span>This comes about because land lease living residents own their home and then secure a long-term lease on the land on which the home is located. (For instance, weekly site fees are around $175 a week at Sunrise).</span></p> <p><span>Mr Strong also pointed out that Hometown Australia community homes are designed to allow people to work or study from home, and enjoy a healthy lifestyle.</span></p> <p><span>He said that the vast majority of new Hometown Australia community homes include multi-purpose rooms, which can be used as a study.</span></p> <p><span>“Most communities also contain a range of features to keep residents active and fit, including pools and tennis courts,” Mr Strong said. </span></p> <p><span>“If you are wondering if you can retire early, or have been forced to retire early, or want to ease your way into retirement, then think about our communities.</span></p> <p><span>“People in the above scenarios might be pleasantly surprised to find that they can achieve a very happy housing and lifestyle solution, and find great new friends along the way.”</span></p> <p><strong><span>About Hometown Australia</span></strong></p> <p><span>To learn more about Hometown Australia and its 48 communities across Australia, go to <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">www.hometownaustralia.com.au</a></span></p> <p><em>This is a sponsored article written in partnership with </em><span><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank"><em>Hometown Australia</em></a></span><em>.</em></p> <p><span> </span></p>

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Discover the resort-like over 50s communities helping Australia’s grey nomads get back on the road

<p>For the last three years, dedicated ‘grey nomads’ Sue and Ross Coburn have explored much of eastern Australia, including visiting Far North Queensland and parts of outback NSW.</p> <p>Now, as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the Coburns have realised the importance of moving into an over 50s community that provides the ideal springboard for their future travels.</p> <p>In late April, the Coburns moved into a new home at <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/nsw/mid-north-coast/beachfront-hallidays-point/" target="_blank">Beachfront Hallidays Point</a>, on the NSW Mid-North Coast. Beachfront is one of 48 land lease communities operated by <a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia</a> across Queensland, NSW and South Australia.</p> <p>The Coburns had just sold their home in Werribee South in Victoria and were beginning a new round of grey nomad adventures when they found themselves marooned on the NSW Mid-North Coast due to coronavirus travel restrictions.</p> <p>“We were staying in a caravan park at Hallidays Point, and not moving, but we liked the area so we decided to look at Beachfront. We found it was exactly what we wanted as a base,” Ms Coburn said.</p> <p>“Being able to walk directly on to the beach, from the resort, was really important to us,” Ms Coburn said. “In addition, being able to park our caravan in a carport on one side of the house, and the car on the other side, was great. </p> <p>“We loved the home layout and the big deck on the back. I also look forward to using the community pool, as I am a keen swimmer, along with the clubhouse.”</p> <p>In addition, the Coburns enjoy the fact they don’t need to worry about home or garden maintenance, or home security, while they travel around the country.</p> <p>Once the coronavirus pandemic lifts, the Coburns intend to live at Beachfront for six months of the year, and then travel for the other six months.</p> <p>They won’t be alone. According to the latest figures from Tourism Research Australia, Australia’s grey nomads account for around 17 million visitor nights each year – higher than any other market segment. </p> <p>With states now beginning to lift travel restrictions, and many retirees getting itchy feet after being cooped up at home or on the road, Australia’s grey nomads are expected to be hitting the road in large numbers in the coming months and years.</p> <p><strong>Hometown delivers for grey nomads</strong></p> <p><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia</a> allows grey nomads such as the Coburns to select their perfect home base from Australia’s largest range of over 50s residential land lease communities. </p> <p>Many of these communities are located in some of Australia’s best-known coastal holiday spots, including Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, Moreton Bay and Gold Coast regions, NSW’s Mid-North, North Coast and Port Stephens regions and South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula.</p> <p>Hometown community homes suitable for grey nomads start at just $250,000. The affordable price point of these homes allows many retirees to top up their retirement savings, after selling their family home and moving into a Hometown community.</p> <p>In addition, buyers in Hometown communities do not have to pay any stamp duty, nor exit fees. They may also be eligible for Commonwealth rental assistance.</p> <p>Most Hometown community homes have two-bedrooms, a study and either 1.5 or two bathrooms. Many of these homes have dedicated caravan and boat parking, in the form of a high-roofed carport next to the dwelling.</p> <p>Importantly, the communities are generally also pet-friendly, which means it is easy to take Rover or Sootie on your grey nomad travels.</p> <p><strong>Secure communities suit grey nomads</strong></p> <p>Hometown Australia joint managing director and CEO Kevin Tucker said he was pleased to see many grey nomads beginning to realise the benefits of having a permanent base in one of his company’s communities.</p> <p>“If you want an affordable holiday there is no better holiday than caravanning around Australia and meeting great people along the way and making new friends,” Mr Tucker said. </p> <p>“Across the vast majority of our communities, we will cater for the grey nomad buyer.</p> <p>“This includes the fact that our homes support low-maintenance living, which makes it easier for residents to lock up and leave for extended periods of time. If necessary, we will even maintain the gardens for our residents.</p> <p>“In addition, for the most part our communities are secure, so our residents feel like they are leaving their home in a safe environment.</p> <p>“And then our communities typically will also have caravan storage, and that is important for a lot of people to be able to store their caravan on-site and easily access it if they need to pack it up and head off.</p> <p>“We have 40-50 communities in various locations across Australia, with a nice range of affordable and quality housing that can cater for just about anyone.”</p> <p><strong>Find out more</strong></p> <p><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank">Hometown Australia’s new website</a> allows potential buyers to easily search communities across Australia and see what facilities and homes they offer. </p> <p>The details of the community manager are listed alongside each community, allowing you to easily find out more information.</p> <p><em>This is a sponsored article written in partnership with </em><a rel="noopener" href="https://hometownaustralia.com.au/" target="_blank"><em>Hometown Australia</em></a><em>.</em></p>

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The sea-change trend sweeping Australia’s east coast

<p>There’s a classic cartoon in which an elderly man, clearly some way from his prime, is laid back in an armchair doing a crossword. With a furrowed brow he calls out to his wife: “Honey, I need a seven-letter word for catatonic.”</p> <p>His wife thinks hard for a moment, and calls back:</p> <p>“Try <em>R. E. T. I. R. E. D.</em>”</p> <p>Of the many misconceptions about retirement – when it should be done, what it should look like – one of the more pervasive is the notion that retirement is necessarily a process of reduction: a well-deserved winding down after decades spent on hard work.</p> <p>But there’s a new trend in retirement on Australia’s east coast that is quickly dismantling the cartoonish stereotype of retirees idling about in community villages. No more Hawaiian shirts. No more bridge club. A huge number of retirees are embracing a particular type of sea-change retirement that, according to several of its fans, involves trading a lifestyle of work for a lifestyle of play.</p> <p>We spoke to three couples who are residents of <a href="https://harringtonwaters.com.au/">Harrington Waters</a>, a hidden gem on the Mid-North Coast of New South Wales, where a community of like-minded residents are being drawn to this unique style of living.</p> <p>Margaret Spours, who lives in Harrington Waters with her husband Stan, radiates positive energy when she talks about her new home:</p> <p>“Oh, we moved here not to sit in the home and watch TV,” she says, smiling.</p> <p>“We want to be out! Outside – down at the beach or walking along the river. Living on Harrington Waters, you can basically walk to everything, and that’s what really attracted us. My husband’s a golfer, so he’s a member of the Golf Club. And me, I love walking along the Riverwalk and to the other parts of Harrington Waters – it’s nice flat, scenic walks, with stunning sunsets. And when our family comes up to visit, it’s nice to go to the beach and explore around Crowdy Head, the beaches, even whale and dolphin spotting.”</p> <p>The distinctive lifestyle offered by Harrington Waters is made possible by Roche Group, one of Australia’s premier development companies with more than 20 years of experience. The waterside community has been deliberately conceived as an offering unlike anything else in Australia, offering a one-of-a-kind lifestyle for the recently retired. This is an area where you’re <span>more likely to see rock fishing than rocking chairs, and friendly neighbours that embrace an active, fun-filled lifestyle, surrounded by an award-winning golf course, shopping village, cafés, a medical centre, newsagency, bakery, Harrigan’s Irish Pub, community centre, library, national parks, Crowdy Head Beach and more.</span></p> <p><span>“There’s just a genuine village feeling,” says resident Adrian McCallister, a retired university teacher who moved to Harrington Waters six months ago with his wife, Annette.</span></p> <p><span>“Something about it’s very peaceful and open, so we can do a lot. It’s where the Manning River meets the ocean, so we can stroll along the beaches, or we can walk over near the river. It’s just very enjoyable and relaxing. There’s a sense of connection in the community village, neighbours become close friends. Bowling is very popular, and golf, even tennis.” </span></p> <p><span>Annette adds in, “...also fishing, boating, biking. And you see dolphins and turtles while walking along the sea wall. There’s so much activity.”</span></p> <p><span>The sea wall Annette refers to is a paved breakwall that extends two kilometres over the Manning River, offering residents a pedestrian walkway with stunning panoramic views overlooking the river to the west and the open ocean to the east.</span></p> <p><span>Annette sees the move as one of renewal; a new lease on life.</span></p> <p><span>“We both had a very full and busy life,” she says. </span></p> <p><span>“I taught dance for 30 years. We came up here to rejuvenate. And from here we can travel up to Brisbane. We can travel down to Sydney and back in a day. We still have children on the Central Coast. We very regularly pop down there to visit and come back.”</span></p> <p><span>Being centrally located allows a number of Harrington Waters residents to have regular visits with friends and family, with Margaret’s husband even commuting to the Central Coast every week for work. </span></p> <p><span>“We have a caravan that he stays in during the week and then he comes home on the weekends,” Margaret says. “It’s easy! He leaves early, and there’s not much traffic at all.”</span></p> <p><span>The final conversation we have is with Mario Schembri, a retired local that moved to Harrington in December, and a keen fisherman. After a brief exchange, he asks for a call back. Several hours later, he confesses:</span></p> <p><span>“When you called earlier, I was on one of the jetties out here catching Blackfish, and I had a bite on the line when you called me, which is why I asked <em>‘Can you call me back?’ </em>I caught a bunch of fish today, it was good. And they’re big ones too, so even better!”</span></p> <p><span>With a local boat ramp, countless jetties and nearby beaches, every home in Harrington seems to be located within easy reach of some of the best fishing spots on the Manning River.</span></p> <p><span>Asked about his experience with the design and construction process, Mario is unequivocally delighted:</span> <span>“The house is 100% perfect, as far as I’m concerned. It’s a RIBA Home, and I’d definitely build with them again. We’ve built a number of houses over the years and this was the least stressful house I’ve ever built. Once the process was underway,” Mario says, “Mate, we didn’t have to do anything. Everything came together. They were about six weeks ahead of schedule. RIBA are a really good company, and they build a real quality home as far as I’m concerned. I’ve had a few homes over the years and this one is by far the best.”</span></p> <p><span>Annette, whose home won Design of the Year last year, was similarly full of praise. “We’re quite chuffed about the house itself,” she chuckles. “The home, by RIBA Homes, was actually designed for our block. The living areas are at the back, so it’s very quiet.”</span></p> <p><span>Life at Harrington Waters certainly seems to have a distinctive charm. A number of modern, brand new homes are being moved into, and some residents are buying land on which to design and build their dream home, close to everything that keeps their life active, social and fun.</span></p> <p><span>—</span></p> <p><span>There are many misconceptions about retirement, most notably the idea that it’s necessarily a process of reduction, a winding down; a lifestyle of stasis or quiet calm. </span></p> <p><span>As for Harrington Waters, and its warm, genuine residents like Mario that are embracing a distinctively new type of retirement, he insists the area is dynamic, and suits a range of personalities and lifestyles: “It’s what you make it. It can be a quiet place. But there’s an Irish pub, a bowling club, tennis. There’s a bit of nightlife if you want to go out. And it’s only 40 minutes from Forster, 20 minutes from Taree and 40 mins from Port Macquarie.”</span></p> <p><span>Toward the end of our conversation, Mario pauses. “It’s just such a nice area,” he says. “Plus, it’s priced right. It’s priced very well.”</span></p> <p><span>Breaking into an endearing laugh, he adds, “So, please don’t tell too many people about it, alright?”</span></p> <p><span>Don’t worry, Mario. There are plenty more Blackfish in the sea.</span></p> <p><strong><em>Our sincerest thanks to Mario and Therese Schembri, Adrian and Annette McAllister, and Stan and Margaret Spours for sharing their photos, stories and the unique lifestyle of Harrington Waters with us. Below are some of our favourite photos, and you can learn more about the hidden gem of Harrington Waters at </em></strong><a href="https://harringtonwaters.com.au/"><strong><em>harringtonwaters.com.au</em></strong></a></p> <p><em>This article was written in partnership with Over60.</em></p>

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Live like a local at these Brisbane retirement villages

<p>Downsizers can forget about home maintenance chores and enjoy a friendly community, resort-style facilities and first-class care and support services when they move into Queensland’s Azure Blue retirement villages.</p> <p>There are two <span><a href="https://www.azureblue.com.au/">Azure Blue villages</a></span>. One is located at coastal Redcliffe, some 28km north of the Brisbane CBD, while another is at suburban Carina, around 7km east of the Brisbane CBD.</p> <p>For years, apartments in these villages have been snapped up by downsizing Brisbane locals keen to spend their retirement years close to their families and friends, favourite shops and health professionals.</p> <p>But now the secret is out and downsizers from right across Australia have the opportunity to discover the benefits of “living like a local” in an Azure Blue village.</p> <p><span><a href="https://www.bluecare.org.au/retirement-living/locations/azure-blue-carina">Azure Blue Carina</a></span> is nestled in a bushland hilltop location in a well-connected inner-city neighbourhood. It has its very own onsite café and is close to major shopping centres, health services and beautiful parklands.</p> <p>The village contains 98 architecturally designed one, two and three-bedroom apartments, some of which enjoy stunning views of the surrounding bushland.</p> <p><span><a href="https://www.bluecare.org.au/retirement-living/locations/azure-blue-redcliffe">Azure Blue Redcliffe</a></span>, meanwhile, is located just a short stroll away from the edge of Moreton Bay, allowing residents to embrace the cleansing sea breeze and the freedom of coastal living. It’s also positioned close to shopping, dining, cinemas and health services as well as having its own onsite café.</p> <p>The village contains 122 one, two and three bedroom dwellings. These are modern, architecturally designed apartments with plenty of space and quality fittings and finishes.<br /><br />Every day feels like a holiday at the Azure Blue villages, which both contain swimming pools, BBQ areas, eateries, gyms, beauty salons and media rooms.</p> <p>Both villages also feature a friendly and supportive community, including well-organised residents’ committees that arrange functions and social activities. This provides residents with the opportunity to be active and connected.</p> <p>Importantly, the villages offer apartment and property maintenance, which means fewer chores and more time for freedom.</p> <p>As one resident of Azure Blue Carina said: “Living here is so easy and low maintenance, with no gardens to mow, we have the freedom to do what we want to do.”</p> <p>Although many residents in both villages live without the need for care and support services, those services are there for you if and when you need them.</p> <p>For instance, apartments in both Azure Blue villages have a 24-hour emergency response system.</p> <p>In addition, residents can access a range of Blue Care home care services, including home care support, assistance with housework, transport around town, and allied health services such as podiatry and physiotherapy.</p> <p>Both villages also have a state-of-the-art residential aged care facility on-site, offering peace of mind that additional care is close by for residents.</p> <p>For more information about the Azure Blue villages, including to make an enquiry, please visit <span><a href="https://www.azureblue.com.au/">www.azureblue.com.au</a></span></p> <p><em>This content has been prepared by <a rel="noopener noreferrer" href="https://www.downsizing.com.au/" target="_blank" data-auth="NotApplicable">Downsizing.com.au</a> on behalf of Blue Care, an agency of UnitingCare which manages more than 30 retirement villages across Queensland.</em></p> <p> </p> <p><span> </span></p>

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