Things to know
Here, we've compiled answers to some commonly asked questions about our vibrant and welcoming community. Whether you're considering making Chatsford your new home or simply curious about the unique lifestyle we offer, this FAQ section aims to provide you with the information you need.
Who can become a resident of Chatsford?
At least one resident occupying a townhouse must be 55 years of age or more. Residents are expected to be able to care for themselves independently. It is important that the type of residence you choose is appropriate for your requirements. To help us assist you in choosing your new home, we may require that your doctor provides a declaration affirming that you have selected the accommodation most suitable for you.
May I make alterations to my home, install fixtures and fittings to my taste?
You can redecorate the interior of your home at any time and make minor changes (other than structural changes.) Any structural changes would require the permission of Village Management and may involve outside agencies, such as a building inspector. All costs involved with this work would be borne by the resident.
If my health deteriorates who will care for me?
You have the choice of receiving supportive care in your home or (if it is deemed appropriate by your health advisers) transferring to Birchleigh Residential Care Centre for this care. Wherever possible, Chatsford residents are offered priority access to Birchleigh Residential Care Centre*. If you meet the appropriate need and asset criteria for this care, it is paid for by the government. If you do not meet these tests, you will be responsible for the cost of this care.
*Access to Birchleigh is always dependent on a room being available with the appropriate level of care required.
Am I guaranteed care for life?
Most residents can spend their last days at Chatsford if they choose to. Very high levels of support may necessitate a move to our aged care facility (currently less than 4% of New Zealand's over 65 years old population require this level of support). Birchleigh Residential Care Centre is generally able to care for residents when their health deteriorates to require long-stay hospital care or specialist dementia care. However, under exceptional circumstances, we may not be able to meet a resident's health requirements and in such circumstances, a resident may need to transfer to a hospital or specialist care facility to receive appropriate treatment.
If one of us become unwell, can we go to the Rest Home?
Residents of Chatsford have priority access to Birchleigh Residential Care Centre. Please note, though, that any placement in a residential care facility is based on a Needs Assessment (carried out by Te Whatu Ora Southern) to determine the appropriate level of care. Access to Birchleigh is always dependent on a room being available with the appropriate level of care required.
Who looks after the gardens and lawns?
We have experienced ground staff who develop and maintain our stunning landscaped gardens, grounds, and lawn areas. The gardens around each home are often cared for by the resident, but our grounds staff can maintain some or all of the gardens if required. There is no additional cost for this service. Composting and mulching are carried out by our gardening team at appropriate times of the year.
Can I have visitors to stay?
Most certainly. Your friends and family are welcome to visit for short periods. If your guest(s) will be staying for more than four weeks in any 12-month period, we request that you obtain approval from management. Your guests may use Chatsford's common facilities provided you accompany them, and they do not disturb the privacy and enjoyment of other residents. If you wish, you can arrange to have a meal with your guests in the dining room. Naturally, advanced notice is requested.
Can I bring a pet?
Many residents have pets, we have several cats and a few small dogs in residence. However, pets are an individual choice; one person's special moggy or pooch can be quite stressful for someone else. Therefore, it is in everyone's interest that management have control over the introduction of pets into the community. Residents must obtain written approval from Management before bringing a pet into the community.
What happens when I leave?
When you exit your home your Occupation Right Agreement Payment will be refunded to you, after the new occupant has settled their ORA payment, less a deduction based on the number of years you have been a resident in our community. Please check our ORA document for specific details.
I have heard that it is possible to buy an Occupation Right Agreement with a friend.
Yes, joint ownership is possible. All occupants must be named on the Occupation Right Agreement.
How is the deduction calculated?
The overall deduction is made up of two components:
Your Community Contribution: This is a deduction of 4% of your Occupation Right Agreement Payment each year for the first five years of occupancy (i.e. up to a maximum of 20%).
Your Chatsford Village Trust Contribution: This is a deduction of 1% of your Occupation Right Agreement Payment each year for the first five years of occupancy (i.e. a maximum of 5%).
How your contributions are spent
This deduction is applied in the following way:
Your Community Contribution helps finance our ability to provide the community amenities that our residents can use and enjoy during their time at Chatsford. A portion of this contribution also covers the return on investment for the developers of Chatsford.
Chatsford Village Trust Contribution
The Trust was established for the benefit of all Chatsford residents. Trust funds are used for major repairs and upgrades within the village. The Trustees, including a Resident Representative, oversee the administration and application of Trust Funds.
What other costs will I incur after I have bought my Occupation Right Agreement?
Chatsford residents are responsible for their own local authority rates, personal electricity, telephone services, and personal chattels.
Note: For residents whose only income is New Zealand Superannuation, an allowance is generally available from Income Support Services. DCC rates rebates are also available for qualifying residents.
What other costs are there over and above the Community Outgoings Charge?
Chatsford residents are responsible for local authority rates on their homes, personal electricity, telephone services, and personal chattels. Meals are available from the Chatsford kitchen. If you choose to use this service, meal costs are your responsibility.
Note: For Residents whose only income is New Zealand Superannuation, an allowance covering a range of services is generally available from Income Support Services. For example, Gardening, Medication, and Pendant Call alarms.
Who pays the insurance?
The insurance on your home and all community buildings is Chatsford's responsibility. These insurance costs are covered by the Community Outgoings Charge.
You are responsible for your own contents insurance.
Who pays the rates?
Where there is more than one home on a particular title (which does occur in some parts of our community) Chatsford allocates a proportion of the total rates for that title based on the floor area of each home.
Local authority rates on common property, such as roading, paved walkways, community buildings, and recreational areas are paid from the Community Outgoings Charge.
Do I qualify for a rates rebate?
Residents within Chatsford may qualify for a local authority rates rebate. Each year, Chatsford will provide you with information on the rates levied to your property to allow you to apply for a rebate if applicable.
I have a family trust - can the trust purchase the home?
Under the Retirement Villages Act, it is a requirement that the Occupier of the home enters into the Occupation Right Agreement. However, specific instructions can be given to ensure Termination Payments on exit are directed to your family trust. We encourage you to speak to your legal advisor regarding this matter, as they would be able to assist you and give guidance with matters relating to your Family Trust.