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Tailor-made Retirement Housing For Everyone
July 05, 2017
Tailor-made Retirement Housing For Everyone

Have you thought of living in a retirement housing unit which is installed with an integrated care link system? Tanner Hill, a pilot middle to high end elderly housing project was completed by the Hong Kong Housing Society in December 2015, provides 588 for-lease-only flats for retirees aged over 60 in the bustling district of North Point. Tanner Hill is an estate to facilitate residents in different healthy states to live independently; and to provide services for them to enjoy life joyously. 

Senior Housing Development In Hong Kong 
Hong Kong Housing Society, a non-governmental organization founded in 1948, strives to be a world-class housing solution provider and innovator that has been long focused on elderly housing and care. In the 90s, the Housing Society introduced the concept of Senior Citizen Residences Scheme to provide middle-income elderly with subsidized lease for life residence integrating housing, recreation, medical and care services that aims to benefit the elderly by way of ‘healthy ageing’ and ‘ageing in place’. Jolly Place in Tseung Kwan O and Cheerful Court in Jordan Valley were the first two pilot projects completed in 2003 and 2004 respectively for the middle-income elderly. 

Being the housing laboratory and to reckon to the Senior Citizen Residences Scheme, in the 2007 Chief Executive’s Policy Address, a request to expand the comprehensive home care approach with quality retirement housing was outlined. The very first high end non subsidized retirement residential care homes for elderly, The Tanner Hill, a cosmopolitan lifestyle design, and the Wetland Park Road, a resort lifestyle housing design, were designed in response to the Hong Kong’s urgent demand for senior care facilities.

Universal accessibility and Sustainability
For all the retirement housings, universal accessibility and sustainability are two important design principles. Special architectural interior design features geared towards senior users are incorporated throughout the development. Patrick Tsang, the General Manager (Planning and Development) of Hong Kong Housing Society explained “The design aims to reduce need to renovate so to reduce waste and reduce use of resource.” Kitchen’s counter top is with suitable height for all users and so as all switches. The dismountable shower place suits different seniors’ needs to reduce alteration and waste.

Smart Home 
All housing units are affixed with home care support devices including emergency call response system, entrance door contact tracking, health data collection and monitoring and no-motion response detection. Alert will be triggered if tenants’ health data falls outside the pre-set personal parameters and the on duty nurse will follow up. When no movement in the living room has been detected for a pre-set time period say eight hours, the staff on duty are notified. 

More Than Just A Home 
Tenants can enjoy spending spare time in the Residents Club and the Joyous Hub. They can watch movies in the mini-theatre, play mahjong in the entertainment room, learn and do arts and crafts in studio or do yoga and dance in the multi-function room.  They can also spend quality time with visiting grandchildren in the children’s playroom. A gymnasium with fitness equipment specially designed for elderly, an indoor heated swimming pool with pool lift for hydrotherapy, and more facilities allow retirees to spend their golden years in a healthy and hassle-free environment. 
What’s more? Housekeeping and handyman services, concierge and secretarial services, home care support service and butler service are upon by requested. If tenants do not want to cook, dining service and restaurant are also available. 
Tanner Hill is not just an elderly-friendly and safe living place for senior residents, but it is also a lively community which facilitates and enhances social connections.

Skilled Care
Tanner Hill offers a full suite of health care services with utmost respect for the residents’ physical, psychosocial and spiritual well-being. The Day Care and Cognitive Training Center and Rehabilitation Center are open for the near by community and residents. The Joyous Home, a residential care home for the elderly requiring assisted-living and dependent-living services provides state of art facilities and services, can host 117 residents.

In addition, facilities include the Family Medicine and Primary Care Centre and the Senior Citizen Wellness Centre that runs by Hong Kong Sanatorium & Hospital. The Chinese Specialty Medicine Clinic is operated by the Hong Kong Baptised University School of Chinese Medicine.
Want To Move In? 
As an elderly housing complex, you can apply only if you are 60 or above. Each flat can accommodate an extra one to three ‘permitted occupiers’, who could be 50-60 years old spouses, domestic helpers, or immediate members of the family.  Temporary visitors can apply for a permit to stay in the complex up to 30 days. 
Depending on the tenant’s age upon move-in and the area of the flat, tenants pay a lump sum of few million for an open lease that stands until they die. In order to attract more tenants, the Tanner Hill introduced the short lease. Seniors can rent a flat at The Tanner Hill at a rate of HK$14,000-54,000 per month, renewable after two years. The short lease can be converted to a long lease and up to 12 months of rent can be used for paying part of the lump sum for the long lease as part of the initiative to encourage tenants on short leases to switch to long lease.
Will There Be More? 
“Housing Society acts as the housing laboratory, Tanner Hill as the pilot senior housing project for middle class. It is being closely watched by local real estate developers in terms of how the market responds. At least one of the real estate developers has shown interests to adapt this model in the future estate project.” Mr Patrick Tsang, General Manager (Planning & Development) of Hong Kong Housing Society, added. 
By 2040, over 30% of the Hong Kong population will be aged 65 and above. An average man will expect to live until he is 84.3 years old, while a woman will have a life expectancy of 90.7 by then. Would the estate developers build enough units to accommodate the demand? How would the estate developers position this high end facilities and services with a reasonable and acceptable price giving the property price is sky end?