ADVICE IS TO EXPLORE ALL THE OPTIONS
Experts urge the elderly to explore all the various living arrangements available to them.
Age Concern co-ordinator Jenny Barker says people considering retirement villages should get a knowledgeable lawyer to check the fine print.
‘‘Do your homework’’ when it comes to deciding on moving, she says. ‘‘There are lots of services available that people may not know about.’’
Barker says the number of older people living at home is increasing. The agency has five 100-yearolds registered as living at home in Auckland.
‘‘The reason they’ve done so well is they are so independent,’’ Barker says.
‘‘There are health benefits in that they’re still in charge.
‘‘Retirement villages don’t necessarily suit everybody.
‘‘If the person is quite shy they’ll not take advantage of all the activities that go on.’’
Eldernet is a free information service focusing on issues concerning older people.
Director Eleanor Bodger says people need to understand the legal implications of any changes they make.
‘‘What suits one doesn’t necessarily suit another.
‘‘Just because someone’s older and needs help doesn’t mean they have to move out of home.’’
Bodger says there are more older people renting or sharing accommodation with friends or siblings.
‘‘It’s a worldwide trend with immigrants coming into the country.
‘‘They are showing us there are other ways people can manage their affairs.
‘‘It will take a wee while for our society to feel comfortable with all the options that are emerging.’’