We welcome Consumer Affairs Victoria’s (CAV) interest in improving internal dispute resolution processes in retirement villages, and believe that the reforms suggested will likely result in some improvement. However, we maintain that a root-and-branch review of retirement village regulation is needed. Without significant reform of retirement village regulation, as recommended by the Parliamentary Inquiry into the retirement housing sector, the minor changes recommended in the Options Paper to internal dispute resolution procedures are unlikely to have any major overall benefit to residents.
The importance of safe and affordable housing to older people cannot be overstated. There is also a dramatic power imbalance between residents and operators that needs to be addressed by significant legislative reform and enforcement action.