One of the biggest decisions you may make is to move or stay in your own home. Moving house is a big change at any age.
Age Concern New Zealand has two new factsheets that look at the options available:

  • Are you considering moving to a different home? Click here to read To Move or not to Move.pdf an information fact-sheet that may help you with your decision.
  • Have you decided to move? Click here to read A Home For Life.pdf an information fact-sheet will help you find what you're looking for.

Enabling older people's independence

Welcome to the Life When Renting research programme.
This four year research programme is funded through the Ageing Well National Science Challenge. It is about the future of older people in an increasingly diverse New Zealand where there is not only population ageing but what is effectively a housing tenure revolution – NZ’s previously very high rate of owner occupation is falling rapidly and is accompanied by a rising dependence on the (mainly private) rental market. This means that more older people, both now and in future, depend on the rental market.
This emerging issue has not been addressed in NZ research, policy, or services. Overseas research shows older renters, whether in public or private rentals, are more vulnerable to housing stress, dwellings in poor condition, and social isolation. The probability of admission to residential care is higher among renters. It also found that older renters are poorly covered by home care services.
The research asks, what are the future implications for NZ of growing dependence on the rental market.
For more information visit

New website advises on buying and selling a home 

The Real Estate Authority has launched a new website,, which provides a wide range of information on buying and selling a home. The website contains a range of resources, including a downloadable Residential Property Sale and Purchase Agreement Guide, a mortgage calculator, videos on auctions and sale and purchase agreements, and buyer and seller settlement checklists.
The site recommends that buyers and sellers should get legal advice before signing anything. It recommends that those selling a property should choose a lawyer or conveyancer before they set out.

Commission for Financial Capability has updated its pages on Retirement Villages.
It includes information on: living in a retirement village; Act, Regulations and Codes; monitoring and reports; complaints and disputes

The Abbeyfield way of life encourages older people to retain an independent lifestyle longer, within a companionable and supportive environment. Along with providing affordable accommodation and freedom from the burden of managing a house and the chore of cooking, Abbeyfield promotes individual independence.

Asset Testing for Long Term Residential Care
The Social Security (Long-term Residential Care) Amendment Act 2004 came into effect on 1 July 2005. From 1 July 2005, older people retain more of their assets while still qualifying for a Government subsidy to help meet the costs of care in a rest home or continuing care hospital. For more information visit Seniorline

Aged Care Hub www.agedcarehub provides a one-stop comprehensive online Community Resource Directory of businesses, services, information for the older person, families and allied organisations.

Consumer Rest Home Checklist and Retirement Village Checklist.
The Consumer's Institute website has a link to both a Rest Home Checklist and a Retirement Village Checklist which may be a great help when thinking about these options. 

Thinking of living in a retirement village?

Buying into a retirement village is different from buying a house. Retirement villages vary in their accommodation, support, management, legal and financial structures.
Making the decision to live in a retirement village or not, and when to make that decision, can be challenging for many older people. Most intending residents release equity from their home or other savings to help purchase occupation rights to a retirement village unit and to supplement their superannuation.
Click here to view the updated copy of Thinking of living in a retirement village?
For more information visit

Visit the website for further information regarding Rest Homes and Residential Care. Included on the site for some regions in New Zealand is comprehensive vacancy information. This is updated daily.

Housing New Zealand Corporation  
Providing access to accommodation throughout New Zealand. If you are thinking of applying for social housing your first step is to talk to the Ministry of Social Development about your housing needs. After an initial discussion, if you are eligible for social housing they will arrange an assessment interview for you. To get started, call Senior Services on 0800 552 002.

My Home, My Choices – Ngā Kete o te Whare

Three years of the Finding the Best Fit research programme found that although older people are frequently told downsizing is the best pathway to a comfortable home in older age, many want to stay where they are or want to consider a range of options. It is not so much downsizing that is important, but finding the best fit, or rightsizing. View Website
The research showed that while older people wanted to be actively involved in decision making about their home-based needs, the decisions were often complex and information to help support decisions was hard to find or confusing to work through. Information was often focused on an immediate need or problem not long-term planning.
As a result the research team have worked with older people and organisations that support older people to develop a practical decision support kit – My Home, My Choices.
The purpose of this toolkit is to help people when considering whether to stay in their current home, or to move. The Toolkit is interactive – the user decides how to use it – it provides people with information and ideas to help them explore their needs, and priorities and whether their current situation meets those needs
The kit can be purchased in hard copy see the order form here or used free of charge as an interactive webpage by clicking this link - web version of tool.

Residential Care Subsidy
If you need financial help to pay for long term residential care in a Rest Home or Hospital, you may qualify for a Residential Care Subsidy. This subsidy is paid by the Ministry of Health.

Work and Income can assist by assessing your income and assets but you will need to have completed the needs assessment first. The reason is that without the “Application Form for Financial Assessment for Residential Care Subsidy” signed by a Needs Assessor and stamped by that service, you cannot seek the financial assessment.
For more information on applying for a Residential Care subsidy visit the Work and Income website

Seniorline is a national telephone service offering help for older people to navigate the health system. Information includes how to get help to stay at home and support services for caregivers. Seniorline can also advise on the process for entry to rest home, dementia or hospital care, funding and the services that should be provided. You can phone them on 0800 725 463

Shanti Niwas Charitable Trust Inc
SNEH (Shanti Niwas Emergency Housing) will provide Emergency shelter for the senior citizens, from the Indian and South Asian community who are in an abusive environment, at risk of being abused, or in dire need of emergency housing.
Shanti Niwas has been providing culturally appropriate services for the enhancement and wellbeing of the older people of Indian and South Asian origin living in Auckland region for the past 21 years. In 2012 KHUSHI – Elder Abuse and Neglect Prevention project was started, to recognise, prevent and respond to abuse and neglect of older people and ensure their wellbeing. While delivering the services, Shanti Niwas noticed the growing need of EMERGENCY SHELTER for Indian and South Asian senior citizens, which resulted in establishing SNEH.
This project will assist senior citizens to lead a good quality of life by providing them the required support services.
Interested persons may contact Nilima Venkat, Project Manager, or by telephone( 09) 622 1010

Trade Me Retirement Villages
TradeMe's Retirement Village section (in conjunction with the Retirement Villages Association) lists more than 280 retirement homes from Northland to Southland, and more are signing up every day. RVA members are clearly identified on each listing and there’s a link to the RVA’s website.

Find your nearest Age Concern