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Five things to consider when choosing a retirement village

Choosing where to spend your later years can be a difficult decision. We look at five things to ask yourself to help you make the right choice.

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There is lots of choice when it comes to retirement villages in New Zealand so it’s really important to take the time and find one that is right for you as everyone is different. "Remember, what village suits one may not suit another," says Peter Fields, Village Manager at Bupa Care Services.

1. Make sure it suits 'you'

"It is vitally important that people select the right village for their needs," "Similar to when you buy a house you know if the house you are looking for is the 'right' one for you and your needs, retirement villages are the same 'you get a feel whether it is going to suit you and your needs."

2. Make sure the size fits

"Bupa is fortunate that our villages are not too large, and have Care Home facilities on site which makes it a very comfortable decision for many prospective residents," says Peter. "There are many things that come into play when you make your decision: the location, size, type of apartments available and their layout size." Speak to the village manager at the prospective retirement home about your needs, and ask to visit an apartment to see its true size.

3. Make sure it's affordable

"It's important that you're completely informed about what is covered in the agreement," says Peter. Ask for a breakdown on what is, and isn't, included in your fees, and ask about weekly, monthly and any likely other expenses. It is important to seek independent advice when it comes to anything relating to finance.

4. Ask your family what they think

Ideally, your family should enjoy coming to visit you in your new home. "Whatever decision is made by the prospective resident it is vitally important that their family members are in agreement too," agrees Peter. So maybe ask them to come on a tour or show them the brochure and see what they think.

5. Make some friends

Speak to other residents at the retirement village you are considering. This may give you a feeling of the community and whether they enjoy living in the village. Ask about outings, activities and village life and how often these are encouraged.

Moving into a retirement village can be a big decision. So it’s important to take your time and speak to staff and other residents and ultimately make a decision that is right for you and your circumstances.

Our Bupa Retirement Village page is a great place to start your search journey.

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