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Retirement Village vs Aged Care

Retirement Village vs Aged Care

As the demands of maintaining your home and garden become increasingly challenging

  • perhaps friends, neighbours and family start moving away …
  • it may be time to consider lifestyle options that enable a fresh, new start to another exciting chapter in your book of life.

Apart from moving in with family or friends, there are generally two structured options available:

  • Retirement Village Living
  • Aged Care

Essentially this decision is determined by the state of your:

  • Physical health
  • Mobility
  • Mental well-being
  • Level of independence

Life in a Retirement Village

Sea change or tree change – joining a retirement village community means that you will find active and independent people at a similar stage in life.

The coterie you choose to mix with may be…

Vibrant, active and dynamic OR Restful, relaxing and peaceful OR A bit of both
The choice is entirely up to you . . .

Your budget and retirement dreams will largely determine the location, size and quality of the village and the home you choose.

Retirement Village


Aged Care

What influences the choice ?

The choice to move into a Retirement Village is generally a lifestyle decision.


Moving to Aged Care is definitely a “needs” driven decision whereby eligibility is determined by an Aged Care Assessment Team (ACAT).

How does it work?

Retirement Villages are designed for self-sufficient, independent living within a community that offers security, support, fun, friendship and activities.
Community facilities are usually included such as areas for gatherings and activities, a hall to house larger events, community BBQ areas, spaces to congregate for a cuppa, community bus. Some have gyms, billiard tables, bowling facilities, pools, consulting rooms for massage, podiatry, hairdressers, and the like. No medical or nursing support staff on-site.


Aged care homes provide care for the elderly that can no longer look after themselves – on a short-term (respite) or permanent basis. They provide 24/7, on-site care including structured meals, activities, distribution of medications, assistance with personal hygiene, cleaning, laundry, nursing care, some allied health services, etc.


In a retirement village, you will be living within your own detached or semi-detached home of one to four bedrooms in size where meals, household tasks, personal hygiene, activities, etc. are your responsibility and organised by you.


Accommodation is generally in the form of a room – some with ensuites, others with shared bathrooms.

Government Support

Retirement Villages are totally self-funded and not guaranteed by any government, however, they are legislated at State Government level.


Aged Care is governed under Australian Federal Government legislation and regulation and is greatly subsidised. Any lump sum accommodation payment by residents, known as a RAD (Refundable Accommodation Deposit), are government guaranteed.

Purchase Options

Various purchase options are available including:
Strata Title – Residents benefit from the security of owning their own Title and home.
This structure applies to all residents at Bendigo Retirement Village.
Lifestyle Resort – Residents purchase their homes and lease the land it occupies.
Right to Occupy – Residents purchase a long-term lease that provides them the right to occupy the home of choice.


An accommodation payment is made to enter Aged Care – the amount and format is usually determined by a Means Test of the income and assets of the resident. The basic care subsidy for each permanent resident is calculated using the Aged Care Funding Instrument (ACFI). The greater the assessed need – the higher the care subsidy for the resident.

Ongoing Fees

A recurring fee pays staff who attend to the smooth running of the facilities, manage the finances, maintain the common property and infrastructure, as well as support resident initiatives – all aimed at providing a trouble free and relaxed retirement.


Daily fees are charged at 85 % of the single basic Age Pension however residents of means also pay a means-tested care fee, based upon an assessment of their income and assets.