Dealing with disputes in a Retirement Village

When is the right time to downsize and start planning ahead for your retirement? The answer is now, having all the information on what options are available is key to making the right decisions and to avoid issues in the future.

When planning on entering a retirement village there are many factors to consider:

  • Affordability
  • Understanding the contract, before signing
  • Access to hospitals and GPs
  • Access to main shopping centres
  • How to deal with any disputes that may arise

In South Australia, retirement villages are mostly owned or operated by either private developers, non-government, or non- for-profit organisations.

You should be aware that you do not own the home / unit in which you live in, but rather you have a lease or licence to occupy.

Once you have decided on a retirement village you will be asked to sign a residence contract, this sets out your rights and responsibilities and the retirement villages rights and responsibilities.

When problems arise in any environment, the best approach is to deal with the situation at the early stages, before the problem escalates into a major issue.

You may choose to discuss the problem with the other people or approach your residents committee before deciding to take the matter further.

The Office for the Ageing can provide a mediation service, where assistance from an independent third party may help in resolving a dispute. The mediator can provide advice to the parties concerning their rights and obligations under the Retirement Villages Act 2016 and the Retirement Villages Regulations 2017, or assist in preparing an application, should matters proceed to the Tribunal.

For more information you can contact the Office for the Ageing, Department for Health and Ageing via phone (08) 8204 2420 or email:

You can also call Agedcare Alternatives on 8408 4600 Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm or email .



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