Hear from Gary Thompson, resident at Aveo Bella Vista, about his decision to make the move into retirement living and what makes his community such a great place to call home.
"I was living in a three-level townhouse and was conscious of the fact that at some point, the number of steps would become an issue for me. My thinking for some years was that my next move would be my final one, and would be into a retirement community. I was anticipating, however, that the move would be some five to 10 years away. However, in early 2019, I finally decided that I had had enough of the unacceptable (in my view) behaviour of one of my fellow owners in the strata complex that I lived in and that it was time to get out.
"With the above observations in mind, I began my research and investigation into the retirement industry and focussed my attention on facilities in Western Sydney, as I did not see myself moving out of the area that I grew up in and lived in for most of my life. After a period of investigation, I actually put a deposit on a unit in a new development in Pemulway. However, upon putting that deposit down, the attitude seemed to change, with responses to questions and enquiries becoming harder and harder to obtain.
"Then one day, when visiting a surgeon post-operation at Bella Vista, I decide to stick my head into Aveo's new facility on the way home.
"The reception I received and the people I met that first visit certainly prompted me to further investigate the possibility of a move there. Over the following weeks, I made several further visits, along with numerous phone and email exchanges. In the end, I made the decision to move into Aveo Bella Vista."
"I had a number of constraints around the timing of my move, the three primary ones being, pending surgery that was going to lay me up for about six weeks, a six-week holiday to North America, and finally the sale of my current home. Aveo were excellent when it came to accommodating these constraints, which essentially meant it ended up being four months between committing to the move and actually making the move.
"On moving day, the local operational staff could not have been more welcoming and accommodating, as they all have continued to be to this day. They are a cohesive team that work well together and seem never to be put out by our varied wants and needs.
"I did harbour reservations during the process as to whether this was the right thing for me, but my experience since moving in has been overwhelmingly positive, and as a result those fears and reservations have pretty much evaporated.
"Additionally, being a new community, we have been actively looking at ways to make the environment “ours”, with the full support and encouragement of community staff. Since I moved in, we have established our inaugural Residents Committee, along with a Residents Social sub-committee. The Social sub-committee has taken over the running of a number of community activities and tailored them to align with our objectives, including things like indoor bowls, snooker, board games, regular morning teas and more.
"However, one of our more significant achievements has been the recent establishment of a resident's bar, which is proving very popular amongst all of us. We have established, what we believe, is to be the first cashless bar in an Aveo retirement community, with the EFTPOS facility we have set up being well received, especially in the current environment where cash is becoming less and less popular. The Social sub-committee is also very keen to start organising off-site activities, but unfortunately is a bit constrained in the current environment.
"I would say to anybody considering moving into a retirement community to do your homework, as no matter where you go, the move is more about lifestyle, rather than financial return. Having said this, based on my experience in the almost 12 months I’ve been a resident at Aveo Bella Vista, I would have no hesitation in recommending this facility to anybody considering such a move."
Click below to discover Aveo Bella Vista.