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A history of the Carlyle Lions Pride Life Lease

First residents moved in more than 20 years ago
Carlyle Lions Life Lease
Chairman Frank Faber in front of his residence at Lions Pride Estates.

CARLYLE - Twenty-five years ago, two Carlyle & District Lions Club members, Bill Brown and Ken Colpitts, travelled to Birtle, Man., to look at a Life Lease project that had been built there.

They brought their findings back to the club and it was determined that local seniors needed another housing option to remain in Carlyle. Weighing the risks, the local Lions Club decided to proceed with the initial construction of duplex housing units.  

Colpitts, working with Bilenkoff Management of Winnipeg, found that there was quite an interest in such a project and a list of prospective tenants was obtained. The Town of Carlyle donated the club five acres of land just off Carlyle Avenue that it had previously purchased from Cecil and Jean George.

It was up to the Lions Club to landscape, install water and sewer, and build the road.

In 1998, construction commenced and six duplexes were built. They were sold out and the first 12 tenants moved in on July 1, 2000. The project was such an initial success that another four units were then built a year later. In 2011, interest remained strong and Chairman Frank Faber proposed that they build another 4 units to complete the project. Again, the building of these units was on time and new tenants were able to move into them in the fall of 2012.

The Lions Life Lease project is one that is new and unique to southeast Saskatchewan. Tenants must be 55 years of age or older. They must invest a specific amount of money (normally 50 per cent of the fair market value) called an entrance fee. While they do not own their unit, they can stay for life. Upon moving, they are guaranteed their initial investment back less a small administration fee.

Tenants then pay a monthly rent to cover the cost of a mortgage payment, property taxes, and a condo maintenance fee. They are responsible for their own power, gas, water, sewer, telephone and internet.

There are many benefits to both the tenants and the local Lions Club. The tenants live in a beautiful home with mutual green space shared among fellow seniors. The grass is cut, the snow is blown, and tenants don’t have to worry about repairs and maintenance. The costs are very reasonable and the seniors maintain their independence.

There are also benefits to the local Lions Club. As the principle portion of the mortgages are paid down, the Lions earn that equity and when the debt is paid in full the Club will own 50 per cent of the units outright. In addition, any appreciation in the value of these properties remains with the club.  

The Lions Club continually upgrades its units replacing appliances, flooring and repainting as needed. New tenants can upgrade their property as they wish with costs and renovations mutually agreed to by both the tenant and the Lions Life Lease Committee. The club is also pleased to advise that Genco Asphalt out of Estevan is going to repave the driveways of the first 16 units built and the entire circular roadway this summer.

Carlyle Lions Life Lease chairman Frank Faber and administrator Sheila Colpitts have worked diligently over the years and provide solid leadership and management. They and the Lions Club are very proud of what has been accomplished the past 22 years. There are 20 beautiful units that are regularly upgraded, many trees have been planted, and many residents maintain lovely flower arrangements. The Savill family has graciously donated a gazebo located centrally in its green space which provides a regular meeting place for the tenants during the spring and summer.

The committee of the Carlyle Lions life lease meets regularly and provides strong guidance. Veteran maintenance personnel to assist with snow removal and grass mowing are available at a moment’s notice. The Lions Club uses local contractors and businesses whenever possible. The Life Lease concept has proved to be extremely popular with a number of local and out-of-town residents on its waiting list. The entire project has been a tremendous success and is a positive addition to the town of Carlyle.

For further information on the Carlyle Lions Life Lease concept, please contact Frank Faber or Sheila Colpitts.







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