• Make sure the life lease sponsor or organization is reputable.
  • Read the terms of the life lease agreement closely and get professional advice.
  • Review the life lease organization’s rules and regulations.
  • If you are buying a pre-construction life lease interest, make sure your deposit is protected.
  • Consider monthly fees and other expenses in your decision to buy a life lease.
  • Make sure you fully understand the processes for resolving disputes at your life lease project.
  • Review the resale process in the event you decide to move from your life lease unit.

Glossary of terms

Life lease agreement
The contract that gives the life lease holder (the buyer) the right to occupy the life lease unit.
Life lease holder
The person who buys and owns the right to occupy a life lease unit.
Life lease interest
The right to occupy a life lease unit, which is what a life lease holder owns rather than the unit property. When you buy real estate, you own the title to the property. When you buy a life lease, you own an interest in that property. Some lease holders register their interest on the land title, but most do not.
Life lease unit
The home. It may be a detached house, a row house or a suite in an apartment-style building.
The collection of all life lease units managed by a sponsor on a parcel of land (houses) or inside an apartment-style building or buildings (suites).
An individual living in a life lease unit (whether the individual is the lease holder or not).
Right to occupy
What the life lease holder owns. When a person buys a life lease interest, they do not buy property. Ownership of the unit remains with the sponsor. The life lease agreement gives the buyer the right to occupy (live in) the unit for a long period of time, usually for their lifetime.
The organization that develops and/or operates a life lease project and usually has title to (owns) the land on which the project is built. Usually, the sponsor is a non-profit or charitable housing provider, seniors’ organization, church or faith group, service club or ethnic association.