The Australian Federal Government has been telling us for a long while now that we should save for our retirement. Various inter-generational reports and future economic forecasting by government suggest that in the near future extraordinary amounts of money will need to be saved for individuals to plan for their own retirement and to avoid the looming Australian Housing Crisis.
The current situation
Governments are withdrawing from social welfare spending across the board. This means that a large number of people who would have expected that they could access Government funded special or supported accommodation as they age will now have to be able to look after themselves. There are simply not enough age care facilities funded by the Australian Government to adequately house the aging population that exists at the moment. Many of our elder citizens will need to change their living arrangements after they retire owing to changes to their health, mobility and relationships.
There are many Australian self-funded retirees who no longer wish to have the burden of maintaining a large family home while they travel either in Australia or abroad. It is all well and good to be a grey nomad and to see the world and to have an exhilarating lifestyle while you are doing it. However, it is also good to have a home base to return to and a dual key home or granny flat can be an excellent arrangement for the grey nomads to touch base back in their state of origin on the occasions that they need to relax and wind down from their trips and holidays. It also gives them a place for the purposes of voting and citizenship. A part of a dual dwelling home can also provide an address from which you can record Company directorships, maintain a library membership or register and insure your boat, car and caravan.
In the Future
In anticipation of the future aged care housing shortage, the Federal Government has been putting pressure on State and Local Governments to streamline the way that they regulate the construction of small structures and extra dwellings on existing blocks of land with houses.
The problem has been, in the past, no two councils could be relied upon to have the same regulatory framework and there was a great deal of difficulty in building an extra dwelling on the property without formally subdividing or strata titling the property. Enter the Dual Income Property, dual key home revolution. They call them many names in different States and Councils but they go by – Dual Income Properties, Granny flats, Dual Occs, Dual key homes, Duplexes and so on.
Dual key Homes – An affordable alternative
The number and complexity of the various nursing home, retirement and supported care facilities can be considerable. Retirees intending to buy into supported accommodation may be required to move many miles from where they are accustomed to living and set up new homes with new people who they do not know, at a time in their life when they are least able to accommodate change and are not welcoming of new environments.
The eventual cost of these arrangements can also be difficult to initially forecast. Residents moving into residential care generally only obtain a mere licence to reside, they are compelled to tie up many thousands of dollars in bonds and arrangements with the care providers and there is often very little left of these bonds when the occupant eventually leaves the supported accommodation or passes away. On exit there can be extensive administration costs, fees and levies that are applied to reduce the funds retained by the nursing home.
Dual key Homes can represent an excellent alternative for the elderly who wish to downsize but retain some control of their funds and living arrangements. Dual key homes meet the needs of those individuals when they can make arrangements with their family members to either build and share or to rent out the other side.
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