Life lease housing developments have been around for many years in Ontario and Canada. There are currently over 125 Life Lease developments in Ontario alone. The Life Lease concept is becoming increasingly popular with the over 55 age group as they no longer need the large family homes or care to spend their time with yard & house maintenance.
The idea of selling a larger, more expensive home and using some of the proceeds to fund a Life Lease, frees up time and money while allowing empty nesters to find companionship with neighbours who share similar values and interests.
According to Canada Mortgage and Housing (CMHC) Life Lease residents are neither owners nor renters; they have a leasehold interest in their accommodation.
Early Life Lease arrangements were created to provide seniors with life-long housing and the increasing level of assistance they would need as they aged. For example, an organization, such as a Church, community based group or ethnic group, would sponsor the life lease development and when the occupant died or moved out, to a nursing home, for instance, the tenancy reverted back to the sponsoring organization.
This gave the resident the exclusive right to occupy the unit within a community of like-minded individuals or couples.
The Life Lease concept has evolved over time and there are now many variations of life leases, just as there are many variations of homeownership. Life Leases can now be registered on title the same as freehold or condo ownership, which protects the interests of the residents. With Market Value Life Leases, the unit increases and decreases in value according to the local real estate market and can be sold or willed as the resident wishes.
There is such a variety of Life Leases and they are not well understood. This article is simply meant to shed some light on the subject and to let people know that it is a viable option. It is highly recommended that you involve the services of a lawyer who has experience or an understanding of Life Leases to help you in the purchase of such a home.
For more information on Life Leases, go to CMHC or
contact: Life Lease Associates of Canada at (416) 367-2917
Life Lease Associates of Canada – Life Lease Housing
CMHC – Life Leases
Ronald Crane – Life Lease (A Form of Home Ownership)
One Elizabeth Street – The Facts of a Life Lease
Aldersgate Garden Homes – The Life Lease Concept
The Gallery Bennett Village – Life Lease