New Horizons Villas owners representative Dawn Schaffer and director Tony Roberts in one of the refurbished units.
New Horizons Villas owners representative Dawn Schaffer and director Tony Roberts in one of the refurbished units. ALISTAIR BRIGHTMAN

A new age in care facilities

A $1.5 MILLION revamp of a Scarness retirement village is offering single, older people a new option in assisted retirement living.

Officially opened yesterday, New Horizons Villas is designed to fill a niche in the market between active retirement living and a nursing home, according to director Tony Roberts.

“My business partner and I have a particular interest in low-cost retirement pitched to try to keep people out of nursing homes as long as possible,” he said.

“Many older people dread the idea of losing their independence and are looking for choices between struggling to manage in their own home and having to move to a nursing home which can represent a significant cost to them and their family.”

Mr Roberts explained that New Horizons residents, who were expected to all be pensioners, would pay $70,000 for a licence for life to give them the right to reside in a unit but if they left within a year they would get a percentage of that back.

He said residents would also pay a weekly net amount of $135, after government rent assistance, for services such as three meals a day, a weekly laundry service, monitoring of a 24-hour emergency call system and maintenance of the grounds, village bus and community centre.

“If we were selling the units, the price would be closer to $240,000 or $250,000 but then the family have to deal with the complications of exiting from the retirement village and paying deferred management fees, etcetera so we charge a one-off fee up front and then when they leave the unit reverts to the owners,” Mr Roberts said.

“They have no responsibility for refurbishment, they just walk out, we come in and re-do the unit.”

He said the complex was accessible for wheelchairs and mobility scooters with no steps, and Churches of Christ would be onsite full time to offer care.

Mr Roberts said 26 existing residents had stayed through the refurbishment process that began in February, and 27 units were available.



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