Living in a “Gated Community” is not for everyone. But, considering the number of new communities popping up, it is the choice of many. The main purpose of a gated community is increased safety for its residents. The safety and security you experience in a gated community are mainly achieved by eliminating through traffic. Nowadays, a gated community is also referred to as a “walled community.” It is a type of residential community or a housing establishment that contains strictly controlled entrances for residents, pedestrians, vehicles, bicycles, cars, and other motorized vehicles.
There are seven features of a gated community affecting residents’ preferences. They are:
- The gates and security.
- Activities and facilities.
- Landscape maintenance and recreational activities.
- Same socio-economic class.
- Open spaces.
These seven features are combined in order to achieve four core values which are: security, prestige, lifestyle, and a sense of community. There are many advantages of living in a gated community. Below is a list of some of the pros:
- Increased security- the level of security offered to those who live in a gated community is an important factor in making the choice to live there.
- Controlled Access-car access and vehicle traffic are carefully monitored behind the gates of the community.
- Slower vehicle speeds- due to the higher volume of pedestrian traffic all vehicle speeds are significantly lower for the safety of those residents and visitors.
- Pedestrian safety- because vehicle speeds are reduced and carefully monitored it is much safer inside the walls of the gated community.
- Access to community grounds- gated communities offer many amenities. One of those is access to all community areas. This may include gardens, a swimming pool, tennis courts, and picnic areas to name a few.
- Greater privacy-when living in a gated community you are sectioned off from the outside world in a controlled and carefully monitored setting. More privacy is the result.
- High property values- Because of all of the advantages of living in a gated community, the property values tend to remain higher than the outside surrounding areas. These homes are almost always a good investment.
- No solicitation- outside persons are not permitted inside the community if not invited by a resident. Solicitations are therefore not allowed or tolerated.
Where there are pros to any situation there are also cons. Here are a few of the disadvantages of living in a gated community:
- Tendency to have higher home prices.
- Inconvenient locations.
- Restrictive “Home Association” rules and regulations.
- Social Isolation.
- Guardhouse frustrations and security issues.
- Costly gate fees and monthly dues.
- Lack of civic power.
- Uniformity of houses inhibits creativity and expression of personal style.
It is believed that many rich people prefer to live in gated communities. Promising to protect residents from crime, as well as from fears of declining property values and loss of prestige and exclusivity, gated communities enable affluent residents to imagine that they can leave the unruly dangerous spaces of cities behind. The largest gated community in America is located in Hot Springs Village; a recreational resort in Arkansas’ Ouachita Mountains near Lake Ouachita National Park encompassing 40.7 square miles. Gated communities are also popular in other parts of the world. The Interlomas area of Mexico City contains hundreds of gated communities and is the largest concentration of gated communities in the world. It stretches over 54 square miles. There are many gated communities in the state of Florida. They exemplify the golf and country club lifestyle. These communities are gated to protect the community’s considerable investment in facilities but also help homeowners maintain their personal investments.
In closing, it is essential to note that gated communities are on the rise in the United States and all over the world. You may find yourself moving into a gated community after retirement. With the rise of crime and economic uncertainty, a gated community is a safe, viable option for secure, happy home life. We at Scarano Architects would gladly help you with renovating or remodeling should you find yourself purchasing a home in a gated community.
Just give us a call at 718-222-0322.