It’s a family affair at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara


Local Ingenia Lifestyle Lara employees Dianna McGrath and Kylie Fordham are keeping it in the family, with both of their mother’s moving in to the community they work in.

Project Sales Manager Dianna’s mum Theresa and Village Manager Kylie’s mum Judy both moved into the community recently, and are enjoying living so close to their daughters.

Ms McGrath said her mum moving into an Ingenia community was about her being able to be independent in a safe environment, close to family.

“It’s great to see her connecting with so many likeminded people in the community,” Ms McGrath said.

“Mum loves having the freedom to do her own thing, from travelling with her friends to joining in the community activities – it’s up to her.”

Theresa said her favourite thing about her new community was being close to all her children.

“I also love how many community activities are on offer, we knit and crochet on Wednesday’s and then once a month our craft group makes greeting cards,” she said.

“We are having a Christmas dinner on Friday and another on Saturday because there are so many of us involved!”

Ms Fordham said her and her sister had been looking at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara with their mum Judy as an option for her to downsize to, before she was even employed there.

“We had been looking for a while for the best option for mum – it was talking to Dianna’s mum Theresa that really made my mum feel comfortable about considering this community as her next home,” Ms Fordham said.

“Theresa offered great advice and insight into how safe she felt in the community and how lovely everyone was.”

Judy said as she was making the choice to move into the community, each time she would visit she instantly felt comfortable there.

“I can see why my daughter wanted to work here and I am glad she does – it’s such a wonderful community,” Judy said.

“I am not usually a social person, but since moving here I have slowly started to attend more events and join in the community activities, everyone makes you feel so welcome – I have made some wonderful friends.”

Take a life-changing detour


Deciding to take a few detours in life can become a little more safe knowing you’ve done your homework, dotted the I’s and crossed the Ts.

For downsizers Reno Denicoli and his wife Helen, a detour saw them instantly fall in love with Ingenia Lifestyle Lara and they have continued to do so for over 18 months.

Reno and Helen originally lived in Hoppers Crossing in a large home for 26 years before deciding to downsize and move to a lifestyle community.

They did their research, looked at all their options, worked out the numbers and created a shortlist.

“We went to look at Geelong and Keilor and then one day we took a detour through to Lara and we felt comfortable straight away.

“The amenities are what drew us in – it really was love at first sight – the water feature at the entry, the aquatic centre and the billiards room; the facilities are up there with the best. It tipped the scales for us choosing to live at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara.

“But, the biggest drawcard at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara is there are no exit fees, you can sell the house yourself and there are no capital gains to share.

“This is community living with privacy and we have peace of mind that comes from living with like-minded people.

“There is a real community spirit and we all have a common dominator where we all help each other, which is great for building relationships,” Reno said.

Find out more about Ingenia Lifestyle Lara by visiting or call Dianna McGrath on 0476 839 644.

Lara lovebirds rekindle in retirement


Residents at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara have rekindled their love as a twist of fate had them move into the same lifestyle community, buying homes only a stone’s throw away from each other.

Di and Bruce Johnson, both in their sixties, purchased properties at the Ingenia Lifestyle Lara community just outside Geelong in early 2017 unbeknownst to the other.

The ‘meant-to-be’ couple re-found romance when they both began spending time in the community’s Be Active program, where residents meet to partake in social activities focussed on health and wellbeing.

Loved up resident, Bruce, said fate and a new lifestyle had bought the couple back together.

“Although separating was truly awful, we would not have sold our home and downsized to Ingenia Lifestyle Lara otherwise, and if it wasn’t for this fantastic community we might not have gotten back together – it’s been one of the best things to happen to us and our relationship,” Bruce said.

“After we began spending more time together again, I decided to open a love letter Di had written to me when we separated.

“I previously couldn’t bear to read the letter so I hadn’t opened it, but having the new found hope that we were rekindling, I thought what the heck, after reading the letter, I knew I was not letting this woman go…again.”

Di, a former retailer, and Bruce, a retired journalist originally got together in the late 90s and tied the knot 18 months later in Bruce’s backyard in the year 2000.

“When Bruce moved into the community we often saw each other around or passed each other in the street – we both love being social so we had a number of mutual friends in the community,” Di said.

“One day, we were all chatting in the community clubhouse and it came up that I had been a bit unwell – after that Bruce came over for a cup of tea to make sure I was doing ok.

Following that we continued to catch up and run into each other at Ingenia’s Be Active events and activities.

“Within days of deciding we still wanted to be together, we each put our homes on the market and decided to buy a bigger home together, within the Ingenia community.

“As luck would have it, there was an open day that weekend, so we thought it was great timing, or possibly fate.”

The pair planned their second honeymoon and decided the Ingenia brand was their good luck charm and holidayed at Ingenia Holidays Cairns Coconut resort.

Ingenia Lifestyle Lara has brand new homes starting from $290,000.

For more information contact Project Sales Manager, Dianna McGrath on 0476 839 644 or visit

Lara’s All-Aussie Adventurer Launches New Book


Over 55s lifestyle community, Ingenia Lifestyle Lara, helped their very own Aussie Adventurer, resident Bruce Richardson (R.Bruce) launch his new book, The Year.

Outlining his feelings prior to the exclusive launch, Mr Richardson was thankful that living in a lifestyle community allowed him to live out his dreams of publishing a book.

After travelling Australia for a year with wife Lynn, Mr Richardson has drawn on his experiences to vividly paint a picture of his incredible journey – his creative flair and unique perspective permeates through The Year and describes an adventure like no other touring the countryside in a camper-van, encountering magnificent Australian birdlife and other grey nomads, all with his partner and best friend for company.

Mr Richardson said living in Ingenia Lifestyle Lara allowed him to pursue his passion for exploring.

“I often travel far into the outback camping, exploring and birdwatching and record my experiences,” he said.

“Living in Lara has made it so much more achievable and comfortable for both myself and my wife.

“My book The Year allows me to share the experience with others – it was more than spending a year travelling, it was the journey of a lifetime.”

Mr Richardson expressed gratitude to the Ingenia Lifestyle Lara community for supporting his literary pursuits.

“This community helps to allow me to continue to follow my dreams travelling across Australia,” he said.

“Moving to Ingenia Lifestyle Lara was the best option for us at this point in our lives we do all the things we wanted to – it’s affordable, safe and a great community to be part of.”

Ingenia Lifestyle Lara Project Sales Manager Dianna McGrath said the community was excited for the book launch and to support Mr Richardson’s retirement dream.

“The community loves sharing their wins with each other and residents have an opportunity to pick up a copy of the book and have it signed too,” Ms McGrath said.

Head to Bruce’s website to find out more and to order a copy of the book online: 

Lara Community Opens the Door to its 150th Home!


Ingenia Lifestyle Lara has celebrated an important milestone as the community continues to grow and welcome new residents into their homes.

Guests, residents and team members marked the 150th new home with a special occasion and an afternoon of fun in the clubhouse which also holds a special place for the residents as it assists in creating an active community.

Downsizers Reno Denicoli and his wife Helen moved into Ingenia Lifestyle Lara 12 months ago and instantly fell in love.

“The amenities are what drew us in – it really was love at first sight – the aquatic centre and the billiards room; the facilities are up there with the best. It tipped the scales for us choosing to live at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara.

“We lived in Hoppers Crossing in a large home for 26 years before deciding to downsize and move to a lifestyle community.

“This is community living with privacy and we have peace of mind that comes from living with likeminded people.

“There is a real community spirit where we help each other which is great for building relationships.

“A resident here is a retired builder and he helped me around the house so in return I helped him connect up his wireless printer.

“There are different people but the common dominator is many of us have come from country living,” Reno said.

Creating community connections


Ingenia Lifestyle Lara Project Sales Manager, Dianna McGrath has always connected with the Lara community through youth groups, school sports, and local activities and committees.

She has been a member of the Lara Chamber of Commerce for more than two years and has been on the local food and wine festival committee to help drive tourism to the region.

However the most recent connection she had a hand in was in her own community, occurring between two new residents, Faye Youla and Pam Youren.

“They moved in about the same time and were both nervous. After the introduction to each other now they are the best of friends, inseparable, like Thelma and Louise,” Dianna said.

Faye said since moving into the community everything is falling into place and she couldn’t be happier.

“I moved to Ingenia Lifestyle Lara in October last year and am so glad that I did – the community makes me feel so comfortable and safe living on my own. When I moved into the community, everyone was just so friendly and welcoming, especially Pam.

“Pam moved into Lara around the same time as me, and we just clicked right away – Dianna is right she is the Thelma to my Louise,” Faye explains.

For Pam, it took her a few visits before making the decision to move in.

“Coming into the community and seeing how friendly everyone was made me fall in love with the community even more.

Making a world of difference in Lara


A genuine, natural, people person and long-time Lara local, Dianna McGrath, shares a slice of her life as a Project Sales Manager at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara, near Geelong in Victoria.

Dianna has always loved the Lara area with its easy coastal lifestyle for all ages to enjoy; whether it’s swimming or surfing at the beach, taking a short trip to Geelong’s waterfront, a train to Melbourne or a lovely drive inland along the Great Ocean Road.

When Dianna’s mother downsized the family home, they went on the journey together and ultimately decided on Ingenia Lifestyle Lara.

The pair couldn’t sing higher praises for the community – a place where Dianna instantly noticed how much seniors were gaining from their new lifestyle.

“I joined the community soon after as the lifestyle coordinator – a job I knew I could support and guide new and existing residents.

“This has been the most rewarding part to my new career,” Dianna said.

Since starting at Ingenia, Dianna has witnessed the community around her grow with more services, retail and specialities stores expanding, and new real estate developments in the surrounding suburbs for younger families which is now bringing in more seniors who are wanting to be closer to their children and grandchildren.

Having to re-locate her own mother, Dianna knows first-hand the emotional process that comes with selling the family home.

“It’s with this knowledge I can help other people and their families move into the community and it’s so nice to receive cards and letters as a token of appreciation for going above and beyond.

“And that’s why I do this…to see the joy and the smiles and the happy families, because I was once there when my mum moved in and I know what they’re going through,” Di explains.

Ingenia Lifestyle Lara has brand new homes selling now. For more information contact Dianna McGrath on 0476 839 644 or visit

A Day in the Life with Mike and Jan at Ingenia Lifestyle Lara

What makes Ingenia Lifestyle a great place to live? You’re invited to follow us as we join Mike and Jan for a day as they go about their usual activities in our Victorian-based community in Lara, near Geelong. 

“Life at Ingenia is one heck of a lifestyle, we have plenty of amenities to keep you busy all day long. For me though I love to get out and about,” Mike said.

6am: I have an electric bike which I ride for 5km every morning while my wife is the gym on the bike or boxing.



8am: After morning exercise we then sit down for a lovely breakfast together.

11am: Jan goes to volunteer at the local op-shop. The main motivation for volunteering is the community, we are so very fortunate and we are just giving back what the community has given us.

12pm: When I’m not at Ingenia, I volunteer with the Geelong Coast Guard, where I assist with the boats on the water and tow them in if they are in trouble. I think I first fell in love with the water when I was a Naval reserve, from then on I always wanted to live and work on the water.

4pm: We love to use the many community facilities and enjoy a causal game of bowls on the community bowling green.

5pm: Of an evening you can find Jan and myself up in the clubhouse, where we like to catch up with our friends and have a few games of snooker and ping pong.

On other days: We are so well located here at Lara, the airport is only 12 minutes away so that makes travelling easier and if I feel like surfing we are not too far away either.

Ingenia Lifestyle Lara has brand new homes for sale. For more information please call Dianna McGrath on 0476 839 644 or visit

Over 55s Urged to Take Advantage of Home Price Rise

, ,

As median house prices continue to rise across the country, now is an opportune time for many asset-rich, cash-poor seniors to downsize their large homes, boost their cash reserve and improve their lifestyle.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ latest residential property price index revealed median house prices rose across most capital cities in the 12 months to June 2017, with the highest growth in Melbourne and Sydney (13.8 per cent),  and Brisbane’s property prices increasing by three per cent[1].

Author, seniors finance expert and government advisor Rachel Lane said senior homeowners could boost their cash reserves by downsizing their home, selling while prices are high and moving into more affordable accommodation.

“Lifestyle-focused land lease communities, for example, are one of the newest types of affordable housing catering to the over 50s market.

“While the homes on offer are of an increasingly high quality, the entry price point is kept low since residents lease, rather than own the land, with low weekly fees. This pricing model eliminates the need to pay stamp duty, entry and exit fees and in some cases, the resident is then eligible for rent assistance.

In Queensland’s Logan City, the house prices in areas like Chambers Flat ($565,000[2]) are more than double (59 %) the $229,000 starting point for the nearby Ingenia Lifestyle Chambers Pines community.

“I would urge seniors to pay close attention to median house prices in their area and affordable housing price points like these to get a better sense of the type of cash reserves they might be able to access.”

“While housing affordability is generally considered a young person’s issue restricting entry to the market, it is also a major problem for those that do own a home but rely on a low weekly income,” Ms Lane said.

Ingenia Lifestyle Chambers Pines Project Sales Manager Lynda Ruddell said the unique land lease model was attracting more attention due to the flexible benefits that allow downsizers to pursue a financially stable lifestyle based on independence, health and wellbeing.

“The innovative design of the new homes allows buyers to reap the financial benefits of the land lease model, meaning residents retain their eligibility for government rental assistance on the weekly site fees,” Ms Ruddell said.

In Victoria, for the 12 months from March 2016 to March 2017, the overall medium house price in Victoria rose to $526,000[3], while in Lara, the medium house price is listed at $435,000[4], allowing some homeowners the opportunity to boost their cash reserves by tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars by selling while prices are high and moving into more affordable accommodation.

Ingenia Lifestyle Lara Regional Sales Manager, Zoe Ilich-Paul, said lifestyle-focused land lease communities are an innovative senior’s home ownership model where the entry price point is kept low since residents lease, rather than own, the land.

“Land lease communities also eliminate the need for residents to pay stamp duty, there are no exit fees and in some cases, residents are eligible for rent assistance on the weekly site fees.

“Our home designs are of an increasingly high quality while providing residents with more capital to fund their senior years,” Zoe said.

Ingenia Lifestyle Lara has a range of home designs starting from $219,000 for a one bedroom floor plan with open plan living and dining and a number of surprise features including covered decking, front landscaping, European stainless steel kitchen appliances and split system air conditioning.



[1][email protected]/mf/6416.0

[2] Residex Suburb Report – Chambers Flat 4133 QLD




Putting Women First as we Celebrate Women’s Health Week


During the 4th to the 8th September, Ingenia Lifestyle Lara celebrated Women’s Health Week with a series of  fun, pampering and educational events.

Business Development Manager, Dianna McGrath said the residents did all of the work to pull together the week’s schedule of events with massive support form Ingenia Lifestyle Lara.

“The focus was about putting women first and inviting our residents and guests in to attend free events that were arranged by our wonderful group of residents, headed up by Heather Swain.

“We started each day with a 10am walk through the community followed by a coffee and tea and biscuits. This was followed by some pampering by Dorothy and in the afternoon Hair Care by Julie.

“We had some fun events with craft morning teas, line dancing, yoga/pilates, table tennis and some belly dancing, it was lots of fun and we had lots of laughs.

“We also had some wonderful guest speakers from the Corio Community Nurse, a Myotherapist to discuss pain management, Osteoporosis talk by Vital Health Chiropractic Lara and a McGrath Breast Care Nurse providing a lot of great educational information,” Dianna said.

Thanks to all who came along and those who were involved in setting up the events, including Heather who has had such amazing feedback from her fellow residents about the week’s events.

Resident, Heather Swain, main organiser of Women’s Health Week.