Increasingly, it seems that apartment living is the way of the future - a view that’s only been reinforced by recent Federal Government initiatives, including a budget measure to boost the superannuation coffers to retirees who choose to sell their home. But it’s not only baby boomers that stand to benefit from living smaller and smarter. It’s proving to be an enticing prospect for people from all walks of life. Here’s a list of five compelling reasons the experts believe will have you considering a resize.
1. Out with the old
When moving into any new home, storage is always one of the biggest challenges but it’s also the perfect opportunity to get rid of unused or unwanted items. Social researcher Mark McCrindle says that in the case of baby boomers, often they’ve been holding onto lots of stuff that isn’t actually theirs. “They’ve been providing a free storage facility for their kids and if the rightful owners take their things, the parents may find they have less than they thought,” he says. Sue Axlund is the interior design genius behind Capital Bluestone’s Esplanade project at Norwest Lake and works at the coal face of helping residents work out how to store the items they do want in their homes. “It’s all about selecting the most functional pieces for each area and creating as many clever storage solutions as required,” she says. “For example, bed bases are available with storage drawers, or you can shop around for a local joiner to make custom shelving units to suit what you want to keep.”
2. Good for guests
Everyone enjoys having guests or grandkids to stay over and this is entirely possible living in an apartment if you have a utility room or a study, where a small sofa bed can accommodate guests. “And if the grandkids are staying often, this is a great opportunity to put a bunk bed in and create a special little room that is just for them,” says Sue Axlund. However, the biggest plus for guests staying over is, ironically, everything outside of the apartment! Director at PRDnationwide Norwest David Inkster says there’s something for everyone at Esplanade, including open air cinemas, putting greens, pools, gardens and generous landscaped parks and spaces. “You don’t need to worry about people sitting around for hours in your apartment when there are a multitude of things to do right outside your door – it’s all right there,” he says. “The kids could be down in the pool, you could take them downstairs for a milkshake, for a walk along the foreshore or even an excursion into the city, with the train station only a short walk away.”
3. Lock-up and leave
A garden or yard is lovely to enjoy but they take an enormous amount of time and effort to maintain. Certainly, a growing number of people are ditching the pruning shears, in exchange for a well-manicured balcony garden. In fact, Mr McCrindle says his research shows the lock-up and leave aspect is one of the biggest appeals of apartment living. “If, on a whim, you want to go away for a weekend or for an extended trip you can - you don’t have to worry about maintenance. Also, a lot of blokes can’t wait to not have to mow the lawn,” he says. Mr Inkster says apartment living also doesn’t mean that you don’t get to enjoy the outdoors. “You just need to think about gardening in a different way,” he says. “Gardens can be catered for within balconies. You can have a vertical garden, a herb garden or an outdoor living and dining area. And the benefit of these gardens is that they’re much easier to maintain,” he says. Still not convinced? Maybe it’s best to hear it straight from the horse’s mouth. Jorginer and Inderjit Lamba have purchased an apartment at Esplanade and can’t wait to resize their way of life.
4. Pets welcome
In the past, apartment living was prohibitive to pet-owners but in what’s probably the biggest ever change to the strata laws, furry friends are now welcome! Mark McCrindle says the strata change is reflective of what’s happening in society. “In Sydney, two thirds of all new house approvals are apartments, that’s where the growth is. That’s why the strata change reflects this, it gives a lot more power to the residents over the by-laws,” he says. New developments are certainly paying attention to what residents want. “At Esplanade, we understand pets are part of your family and this is catered for with large balconies and access to amenities,” says Sue Axlund. “By walking your dog each day, you can also get to know the neighbourhood and your neighbours.”
5. Love thy neighbour
We’ve all been at the mercy of noisy neighbours at one time or another but new developments are taking every step to ensure this isn’t something you’ll need to worry about. David Inkster says at Esplanade, noisy gatherings have been catered for with specifically designed communal spaces. “There is the sky garden and the resort room that comes off the pool area, which is a facility that owners and occupiers will be able to use or hire out for parties or functions,” he says. And if you’re still concerned about privacy outside? “Clever screening with pots and plants can provide a wonderfully private outdoor space,” says Sue Axlund. “But why not just meet your neighbours and invite them in for a drink, so you can get to know how you both like to live in your space. You never know, you might even make a friend.”
We are committed to protecting your privacy. When we request personal information, we will normally explain why we need it, how it will be used and who we may share it with. At all times we will comply with the terms of this when handling your personal information. This policy answers the following questions about privacy at Aoyuan International:
Why do we need your personal information?
Understanding and meeting our customers’ needs is a central part of our business. We do this by providing real estate and services under various brands that are offered by entities within Aoyuan International. To do this effectively, we need to collect certain personal information.
In this policy, personal information is any information that could identify you or be used to establish your identity.
We collect, hold, use and disclose customers’ personal information so we can establish, manage and administer the products and services provided by us, and comply with legal and regulatory obligations. We may also use and disclose your information for purposes related to those mentioned above, such as:
Will my personal information be used for direct marketing?
We use and disclose your personal information to keep you informed about the range of properties offered by us.
You can opt out of receiving direct marketing information from us at any time (see the section 'How can you contact us about privacy?').
What happens if I do not provide information that has been requested?
It's your choice whether to provide your personal information. However, if you don't, we might be unable to fulfil your request for specific information.
What types of personal information do we collect?
We may ask for a range of personal information to assist us in providing you with relevant enquiry or property purchase. The information we request could include (but is not limited to) name, address, date of birth, contact details.
How do we collect personal information?
Most of the personal information we collect will be directly from you. We gather this information either through forms that you complete and submit to us (in writing and digitally), by the information you provide via phone calls and interviews and through other forms of communication.
In some cases we might collect your personal information from external sources. Examples of the people or organisations that may provide us with information are:
Can you remain anonymous or use a pseudonym when dealing with us?
If you wish to remain anonymous or to use a pseudonym when dealing with us, we may be able to provide you with limited information or services. However in many cases it will not be possible for us to assist you with your specific needs if you wish to remain anonymous or use a pseudonym.
How do we protect your personal information?
Whether your personal information is gathered through face-to-face meetings or by interacting with us via telephone, mail, internet or other methods, we take steps to store your information securely. We hold your personal information in a combination of secure computer storage facilities, paper-based files and other formats.
We take a number of steps to protect personal information from misuse, loss, unauthorised access, modification or improper disclosure. These include instructing our staff and advisers who handle personal information to respect the confidentiality of customer information and the privacy of individuals.
When we don’t need your personal information anymore we will delete, destroy or de-identify it.
Who do we share personal information with?
From time to time we may share your personal information with other entities both within and outside of Aoyuan International. The entities that we might share your personal information with vary according to the product or service involved, but could include:
Do we send personal information to overseas recipients?
Some of the entities that we share information with may be located in, or have operations in, other countries. This means that your information might end up stored or accessed in overseas countries, including Australia, China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Canada.
When we send your personal information to overseas recipients, we make sure appropriate data handling and security arrangements are in place.
How do we update your personal information?
We will update your personal information if you contact us. In most cases you can update your personal information over the phone, by email or via our website.
We may update your personal information if we believe the personal information we hold is incomplete or out of date, we could seek to correct or complete our records by gathering data from other sources such as public records and other organisations.
How can you contact us about privacy?
How do you find out about your personal information we hold?
You can access the personal information that we hold about you by calling, emailing or writing to us (see how you can contact us about privacy). We’ll do our best to respond within 30 days; if it’s going to take longer, we’ll get in touch to let you know why and ask for more time.
There are some situations where we are allowed to refuse or limit your access to information, for example when the information is commercially sensitive. If that happens, we’ll write to you and let you know why.
There is no charge for making a request to access your personal information. However in some cases there may be a charge to cover the time we spend locating, compiling and explaining the information you ask for. If there is a charge, we’ll give you an estimate up front and confirm that you wish for us to proceed.
What are cookies and how do we use them?
Links to third party websites
Our websites may have links to external third party websites that may benefit the user. External websites should contain their own privacy statements and we recommend you review them when using their websites. Please note, however, that third party websites are not covered by this policy, and these sites are not subject to Aoyuan International’s privacy standards and procedures.
Website analytics measurement software is used to assist in tracking traffic patterns to and from our websites, anonymously surveying users of the sites. The system is used to collect such information as the number of unique visitors, how long these visitors spend on the website when they do visit, and common entry and exit points into and from the website. This non-personal information is collected and aggregated by third party software and provided to us to assist in our analysis of our websites. You cannot be identified personally from this information and no personal information is stored about you.
About this policy
This policy is effective as of 16 August 2017. We will update this policy when our information handling practices change, and any amendments will apply to the information we hold at the time of the update. We will post the updated policy on our website; we encourage you to check our website from time to time to view our current policy, or contact us for a printed copy.