The Commerce Commission today confirmed its involvement with the Retirement Village Department.photo/courtesy
The Commerce Commission has launched an investigation into the multi-billion dollar retirement village sector as the ministry draws attention to the sector’s practices.
The Committee today
Engagement after years of complaints from Retirement Village Residents Association, Consumer NZ and others.
“We have received complaints and have begun investigating whether there are potential problems under the Fair Trade Act,” a spokesperson for the commission said.
Te Tūāpapa Kura Kainga The Ministry of Housing and Urban Development released the survey in December following extensive change requests from consumers NZ, retirement commissioners, associations and residents.
Association President Brian Peat said today: We, along with Consumer NZ, believe that some terms are unfair and do not stand up to scrutiny. “
The feedback from the villagers was simple. Changes should be retrospective.
“It would not be fair if the 50,000 residents did not benefit from legislative changes and the findings of the Trade Commission,” he said.
The association’s chief executive, Nigel Matthews, also welcomed the committee’s involvement.
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Consumer NZ Chief Executive Officer John Duffy said of the Commission’s move:
“It’s really good for retired villagers and those considering buying into their village that the commission is taking what we understand to be a multifaceted study of industry practices. News, we understand these surveys are about misleading wording, which is common among larger players with rest houses and village facilities.
“Once you enter such a facility, the industry gives you the impression that they can support and cater to your needs for life. It says it can be transferred to home care even though it states very clearly in small print that it only occurs.
According to Duffy, the progress has not been as simple and clear as industry advertising suggests.
“This is a concern for residents who believe they can rely on rest home care and who think they can stay with their spouses in the village. They may not be able to,” Duffy said. .
He said provisions of the Occupation Rights Agreement, which are fundamentally unfair and violate fair trade laws, require investigation by the commission. This has affected the fundamental foundations of how the entire retirement industry operates.
It may be necessary to review all documents signed by some 50,000 New Zealand retirement village residents.
The Retirement Village Association, which is lobbying on behalf of the owner-manager, said the changes were a result of the introduction of a voluntary code of conduct.
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Most villagers are happy and don’t like to hear that the sector needs to change, the association said.
The company put out advertisements in the media last month to lobby against the change.
However, associations representing residents say they are concerned about the unfairness of the 2003 Retirement Village Act, regulations and codes of conduct. These laws do not contain any review provisions and no longer protect the consumer rights of residents given the changing economy, changes in care and medical care. expectations of sectors and residents.
Ten practices are of concern, but owner-operators say they are not used or prevalent in large businesses.
Graham Wilkinson, president of the Retirement Villages Association’s business lobby group, said that if any of the 10 were carried out, it would be by a small number of smaller operators so people could know before they buy. It said it was previously disclosed.
Residents and those looking to buy into their villages attended a meeting where the 10 practices were listed and handed out information via flyers.