Debunking the common retirement village myths

8 legends including “Retirement communities are just for old people!”

It’s incredible the stories you hear in the media these days. Let’s face it – a ‘horror story’ and bad news just seem to generate more interest than the ‘boring’ truth.

Spend any time in the retirement village industry and you’ll find that as a whole, it’s made up of great people, doing a wonderful job and providing excellent facilities to their residents.

So if that’s one myth – what else aren’t you being told? Let’s take a good look at some of the common retirement village myths, and what the ‘boring truth’ about retirement communities really is.

And naturally, there are always exceptions to the rule. So we certainly encourage you to do your research and take a close look at a village before you decide to pack up your world and move in.

Myth #1: You can only live in a retirement village if you’re retired

This one is understandable – since the name ‘retirement village’ certainly would indicate that you have to be retired to live there!

Yet it’s not so. You can choose how much or how little you want to do. There is no manager with a big stick saying “You have to stop doing everything if you want to live here!”

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Some residents continue to run a business or work full time, looking forward to coming home to a relaxed and vibrant environment. You’ll find others on committees or volunteering in the wider community.

This is your life, so yes you can spend it in a retirement village whether you want to work or play or both!

Myth #2: Only old, sick people can live in a retirement community

We all know that 90-odd year old who says “I don’t want to go into one of ‘those’ villages as they’re filled with ‘old’ people!” We can all see the humour in it, but what’s the reality?

You’ll find there is a massive difference between a retirement village and a residential aged care home (or nursing home). Where retirement living is for independent, active seniors who are mostly able to care for themselves; aged care homes are for when you are no longer able to look after your own needs.


When you move into a retirement village when you’re fit and healthy, you’ll be able to fully enjoy all the facilities, services and activities. Although you don’t need it (yet) you’ll still find support services available such as 24/7 emergency buttons, visiting practitioners and a range of optional in-home care and support if required.

You can enjoy living the retirement lifestyle longer before you need to transition into residential aged care when that time comes.

Myth #3: In retirement communities, you cannot entertain or have people stay over

That’s just not the case. In fact, it’s your home... you decide who visits! Friends and family will be welcome to visit and stay with you in a retirement village. You can cook, entertain and your guests can enjoy all the community facilities such as pool, spa, tennis etc., as long as you accompany them.

Rules around the length of time will vary and longer stays will require approval. No doubt your guests will want to come and visit often if your community is more like a resort!

What's it REALLY like to live in a retirement village?

Myth #4: You must socialise all the time; there’s no privacy

While there’s certainly plenty on offer when you live in a modern retirement village, it’s just not the case that it’s ‘party central’ every hour of the day. That’s what cruise ships are for!

Choose a retirement village where you know your independence and privacy will be respected. That way you’ll know that it’s completely up to you whether and when you want to participate.

And of course, if you just love to fill your social calendar, then there will be loads of fun at your fingertips.

Myth #5: You can’t have a pet when you live in a retirement village

Dozens of our fur babies can confirm: more and more retirement communities are realising the benefits of residents bringing their furry (or feathered) family members with them... and the heartbreak when they can’t.

When comparing villages, make sure you’re clear on what’s acceptable... and what’s not. Many will allow a small pet to live with you and some allow two small dogs or a dog and a cat. It’s rare to find a village with a strict ‘no pets’ policy, but they do exist. There will be very clear guidelines on how pets should be looked after and how they need to behave.


Myth #6: You can’t take a holiday away

On the contrary: it’s often much easier and safer to leave your home in a retirement village than a standard suburban home. It’s a matter of letting the management team know your itinerary then you can just lock up and leave.

Retirement village residents also tend to look out for one another, so you can be far more confident to simply lock up and leave. And of course, with the lawn and common garden maintenance taken care of, you won’t return to find an out-of-control mess that makes you forget you ever went on holiday!

Myth #7: You can’t have your own garden when you live in a retirement village

Not the case. While one of the attractions of retirement living is that much of the maintenance of your home and the village is done for you, in most cases you are welcome to continue your green thumb pursuits.

As you’d expect, there will be guidelines to follow. There is a certain ‘image’ every village must maintain, so you probably won’t be allowed to plant just anything in your front garden.

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Myth #8: It’s expensive to live in a retirement village

You may be surprised to find you can actually save considerable money by moving from your large family home into a smaller, more modern, maintenance-free home.

While costs do vary from village to village, you’ll probably find you can actually save considerable money by moving from your large family home into a slightly smaller, more modern home in a retirement community.

Of course, every retirement village is different, so it pays to gather all your information, do the figures, and work out what it’s costing you to stay and what it will cost to downsize and move into somewhere more manageable.

Find out the truth about retirement living at Kensington Gardens

Kensington Gardens Albury and Shepparton were created to allow you to “lock and leave” your home and head off on holidays worry-free!

You’re welcome to come and visit us to tour our facilities, see our architect-designed homes, and get a feel for our lock and leave retirement community.

If you’d like to see Kensington Gardens for yourself, arrange your personal tour by calling us today or get in touch online to book a time to come in and visit us.

What to look for in a home for retirement