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26 | 55+ DEVELOPMENT WORDS |Margaret Wylde


BUSINESS Australian rules


With turmoil hitting the world’s other markets, Australia’s 55+ housing industry is fairly well developed when compared with Europe. The country already has scores of communities that are marketed at the over-50s. But what is the bigger picture like?


Europea and a number of other countries around the world.


A


Australia has scores of communities marketed “for the over 50s,” the term used frequently to refer to this product (see table below). We identifi ed 30 developers, 140 communities actively selling and an additional 30 communities in planning. Overall, our admittedly incomplete count of the number of residences suggests there are roughly 26,811 homes, villas or apartments that are completed or in planning in communities for the over- 50s market-sector today in Australia. Some of these communities may have some of their residences positioned to provide care for those needing assistance, but the majority of stock is lifestyle housing for the 50-plus-sector. Stockland, the largest developer of


over-50s housing identifi ed in Australia, is a publicly traded company on the Australian Stock Exchange. The bulk of its retirement-living communities are resorts for the over 50’s. As of December 31, 2011 Stockland had 7,769 residential units completed and 3,627 units in the pipeline7. Its


ustralia’s 55+ housing industry is fairly well developed compared with


properties are a mix of single-family homes and apartments and prices range from a low of $94,000 to a high of $1.5m. Stockland offers serviced apartments in 21 of its communities that offer meals three times daily, 24-hour medical assistance, cleaning, and heavy laundry service. National Lifestyle Villages, with nine completed communities and one in planning, develops resort communities for the over 50s. It describes its homes as modular.


Palm Lake Resorts is run by the family-owned company Walter Elliott Holdings Pty Ltd, the third largest developer of over 50s housing identifi ed. Palm Lake Resorts has placed some 3,000 units of manufactured homes on the eastern seaboard of Australia. In Australia, manufactured homes also may be referred to as transportable or pre- fabricated homes.


Many of the communities are referred to as lifestyle villages, and most appear to offer the same lifestyle and amenities. This is usually a mix of an outdoor swimming pool, a bowling green, a community centre, a library, and a workshop. A few communities have ballrooms, theatres,


Mean Annual Gross Household Income Australia


$100,400 90,400 $80,400 $70,400 $60,400 $50,400 $40,400 $30,400 $20,400 $10,400 $400


1980 $87,776


stage, a bar, media room, fi tness center, arts and crafts room and possibly a restaurant. Most amenities are basic and understated. The homes, whether built on-site or pre-fabricated, are basic, single-story, two to three-bedroom residences that are boxy and have few frills. Several communities, particularly those with manufactured homes, sell the homes, but rent the land. Compared to other parts of the


world, Australia has a strong economy and has not experienced the full brunt of the global economic crisis as have many other countries. Australia’s employment rate has


fl uctuated only modestly between 2005 and today stands at 5.2% which is essentially the same level it was in February 2005 (5.1%). Comparing countries, in 2011 Australia’s average unemployment was 5.0%, Germany’s was 6.0%, both France and the U.S. had rates of 9.1%, Greece 17% and Spain 20.8%1. Australia’s mean annual household


If you are interested in a country or are a developer of 50+ housing who wants to be included in an article about a specifi c country, please contact us via: Mark Jeff ery at mjeff ery@promatura.com


income was $87,776 in 2011 (see table below) and its gross domestic product per capita per year was ranked 10th in the world.


75% of its population lives in urban


areas. The estimated population of Australia in 2011 was 22,620,554 (Exhibit 2), with a population density of 2.81 persons per km2. In contrast, Russia has 8.11, the US has 32.6 and the UK has 257.4 people per km2. The 55+ population makes up 25.2% of the total Australian population5. Only four of the 27 European Union countries have a smaller proportion of their population who are 55+: Luxemburg (24.6%), Slovakia (23.9%), Cyprus 23.8%) and Ireland (20.9%).


Projected Total Population of Australia Projected 55 + Age Groups 2011 and 2025


Percent of Total Population and Percent Growth of Each Age Group Age Group 2011 $58,656 $46,020 $33,072 $23,608 Age 75-79 1985 1990 1995 2000 Source: Promatura 2005 2010 2015


Age 80-84 Age 85+


559,851


444,422 415,427


2.47%


1.96% 1.84%


998,627


625,887 600,992


3.76%


2.36% 2.26%


78.37%


40.83% 44.67%


$37,596


Total Population 22,620,554 Total 55+ Age 55-59 Age 60-64 Age 65-69 Age70-74


5,700,894 1,350,263 1,247,102 952,868 730,961


Percent of Total


/


25.20% 5.97% 5.51% 4.21% 3.23%


2025


26,575,256 7,841,056 1,547,522 1,535,550 1,368,256 1,164,222


Percent of Total


/


29.51% 5.82% 5.78% 5.15% 4.38%


Projected Percent Change 2011 to 2025


14.88% 37.54% 14.61% 23.13% 43.59% 59.27%


www.opp.org.uk | MARCH 2012


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