Changing your mind - Retirement villages
If you sign a residence contract, and you change your mind within seven working days of the date of the contract, you can terminate the contract without penalty. This is called the ‘cooling off’ period.
If the manager or person representing the retirement village does not give you the required pre-contractual disclosure information before you signed the contract, the cooling off period increases to 17 working days from the day that you actually receive the required information. This cooling off period ceases to apply if you move into the village before the seven (or 17) working day periods have expired. Be aware that moving even a single piece of furniture into the premises may void your cooling off entitlements.
If you decide to withdraw from the contract within the cooling off period, you must immediately write and tell the manager of the retirement village that you have withdrawn from the contract. Feel free to call our Advice Line on 1300 304 054 if you are unsure about who else you may need to send your notification to.
If the cooling off period has expired and you want to terminate the agreement, depending on the terms of the residence contract and how long after signing it you wish to terminate it, you may be required to forfeit all or a part of the entry payment. You should therefore seek independent legal advice if this is something you would like to explore.
Given the above, it is also important that, before signing a residence contract, you understand the financial consequences that will apply if you change your mind after the cooling off period has expired. In this regard, it is strongly recommended that you seek independent legal advice on this and other consequences flowing from the residence contract, before you sign it. Take whatever time you need to obtain advice and discuss your thinking with family and friends. Don’t sign a contract until you are sure this is the right choice for you.
Further information is available in the Seniors Housing guide.
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