Leaving a village

About this article

This article is general information only and briefly explains the process when you choose to move out of your accommodation unit.

Important information – your rights and obligations may differ from those explained in this fact sheet owing to your village’s specific operational arrangements (e.g. you live in a freehold village) or the conditions stated in your residence contract (e.g. you may not be responsible for reinstatement costs) (see article – The importance of referring to your residence contract).

Legal advice and the law

It is important to obtain legal advice that is specific to your circumstances.

The Retirement Villages Act 1999 (the RV Act) contains the law about retirement villages in Queensland.

Your rights and responsibilities

You must give the scheme operator at least one month written notice, that you are terminating your lease.

You must also read your residence contract to understand any fees and charges you have to pay, and the things that must be done.

Most scheme operators have a process that is to be followed and will also provide the necessary paperwork to be completed.

Condition of unit when leaving

You may be required to, or in some cases you may choose to, pay all or part of some type of work to be carried out by the scheme operator to have the unit returned to a marketable condition.  The work may entail reinstatement or renovation depending on the terms of your contact and when it was signed.

Some requirements for reinstatement and renovation under various residence contracts and the RV Act, include the following:

  • which matters may need your agreement
  • what work may or must be carried out
  • who pays for the work
  • when the work must be completed by
  • what you may do if you do not agree to the work, the completion date or their costs.
  • reselling the right to reside in your unit

Once you have signed the termination papers, you and the scheme operator must negotiate in good faith to agree on a resale price.  After agreement is reached, you will be given a document showing all the costs you will have to pay and the final amount of money you will receive.

If no agreement is reached within 30 days from the termination date, the scheme operator must obtain an independent valuation within a further 14 days.  You and the scheme operator must share the cost of the valuer in the same proportion as the gross ingoing contribution on the sale of the right to reside, is shared under your residence contract.  This valuation then becomes the resale price.  You will receive a document showing all the costs you will have to pay and the final amount of money you will receive.

You are also entitled to engage a real estate agent, if it is not sold within 6 months or earlier where your residence contract entitles you to do so.  You will be responsible for all costs associated with this.

Your residence contract may also allow you to privately find a buyer.

Costs when selling

The RV Act prohibits the scheme operator from charging a fee for reselling the right to reside in your accommodation unit.

The resident may have to pay a proportion of the costs of a registered valuer engaged by the scheme operator where agreement cannot be reached about various selling issues.

There will be various professional legal cost and Government fees relating to preparation and registration of the relevant documentation.

Exit entitlement

How is the exit entitlement calculated?

The exit entitlement amount will be the ingoing contribution less, where applicable, the following deductions:

  • exit fee
  • fees and charges for documents
  • ongoing general services charges since termination
  • capital gain/loss adjustment
  • costs for reinstatement or renovation
  • proportional costs for registered valuer, if one was engaged.
  • When must an exit entitlement be paid?

Where your right to reside is terminated, the scheme operator must pay you the exit entitlement on, or before, the earliest of the following days:

  1. the day stated in your contract
  2. 14 days after the settlement day
  3. no later than 18 months after the termination date, or a later date fixed by the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT).

You must make arrangements for where you will live during the time you are waiting for payment of your exit entitlement.