Demand for affordable retirement housing grows on the Border

Graeme and Heather Smith together with Janet Lauritzen in front of their new house at Albury Citygate Lifestyle Park. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

Graeme and Heather Smith together with Janet Lauritzen in front of their new house at Albury Citygate Lifestyle Park. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

THE increasing demand for affordable retirement housing on the Border was apparent at an open day at Albury Citygate Lifestyle Park at the weekend.

More than 100 people inspected stage one of a development consisting of six homes for people aged over 55.

Graeme and Heather Smith were so convinced they bought one of the homes and will move to the park in three weeks.

“We liked the house’s layout and the area it’s in,” Mrs Smith said.

“We like the country lifestyle feel, the people and staff have been really friendly and it’s close to the Thurgoona shops and cafes.”

The homes are part of a plan to turn a rundown caravan park into a lifestyle park for residents and tourists.

Park manager Janet Lauritzen said that if the demand evident at the weekend held, they could build 100 houses at the park in the next three years.

“We have already sold three of the six homes and have very strong interest in another two,” she said.

“The number of people here this weekend has easily exceeded our expectations.”

Ingenia Communities, which bought the park a year ago, is keen to get on with developing the park following the success of the first stage.

“We hope to build a community centre by the end of the year with a kitchen, deck and pool where residents can get together at their leisure,” Mrs Lauritzen said.

Sales manager Rosie Pope said that with a combination of camping and caravan sites, cabins for tourists and homes for permanent residents, the idea was to create a sense of community where family and grand kids were welcome.

“In a normal house, people can get quite lonely, but here there are like-minded people,” she said.

“Residents can have pets and veggie gardens and not have to maintain a large house.”

All the homes have been professionally designed and Citygate welcomes people to inspect the houses at any time.

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