Housing for the silver tsunami

What we want out of housing changes throughout life.

The housing we choose is a function of our financial situation, the community we aspire to be part of and the proximity we want to family, friends, and our workplaces.

Our cities are efficient and our lives easier when we can move easily to housing that suits our lives.

A growing and vibrant part of our industry is retirement living.

Like so many countries, our population is ageing and our life expectancy is growing. Frankly, longer life expectancy is a good challenge to be facing!

A silver tsunami coming – and our industry must be ready with the suite of housing options to suit older Australians.

Next week, over 400 representatives across the industry will gather for the National Retirement Living Summit. The conference will seek to answer the question – how can our industry encourage healthy ageing?

It is a proven fact that people who can live independently live longer and healthier lives – and our industry can help create the retirement communities and settings that allow people to live independently longer.

Of course, we also must remove the impediments to a vibrant retirement living sector – stamp duty, transaction costs and the pensioner assets test create real disincentives for older Australians to downsize. This is even though independent living is less expensive to government than aged care.

As well, many states are finding that clunky planning systems have made it difficult for the industry to deliver more retirement living accommodation. Our Queensland Division is doing some innovative work with Brisbane Council to remove some of these constraints.

There is much to do, but our retirement living industry is innovative, a world leader and is readying itself for the silver tsunami ahead.