Should You Buy a Home in a Gated Community?
Posted on Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Should you purchase a home in a gated community or look elsewhere for the perfect house for your family?
Home-buying is full of choices. Should you buy a home or rent an apartment? Is that rancher the best choice, or would it be better to buy a duplex with friends? Buying a home in a gated community is one of your many options when you're considering a home purchase. What are the pros and cons of this decision?
Gated Communities Have Rules
Sometimes, rules give you a feeling of safety and community. Gated communities often have rules that govern residents. For example, there may be a curfew or strict parking restrictions. If you want to landscape your garden or paint your house, there can be rules that govern these choices as well.
If you like consistency and safety, these rules can make you feel at home. If you're a rebel looking for a cause, the rules of a gated community might chafe, irritating you even if you otherwise love the community. Decide whether you can live with the community's rules before you buy.
The Price Is Consistent
When you're looking for homes outside a gated community, you can choose from a wide variety of prices. You might decide to downsize and seek a less expensive duplex or apartment. You could look for a home that's in foreclosure to see if you can get a deal.
In a gated community, homes are usually around the same age and about the same size and price. Your range is limited, and you'll need to be satisfied with the rate for homes in that area or choose to look elsewhere. On the plus side, the consistency in price means that you're buying more for the location and community rather than the specific price of an individual home.
Homes in gated communities also tend to hold their value over time. Since gated communities tend to be safer, with more consistent culture and amenities, they tend to retain their value better than some other housing choices you could make.
Gated communities can come with community amenities such as fitness rooms and pools.
You Have Amenities But You Need to Pay for Them
Gated communities often have a selection of amenities that many enjoy. Whether it's a guest apartment in a gated apartment complex or a pool or tennis court, you'll be able to own many amenities that might not otherwise be possible for your family. However, the downside of having these amenities is that you need to pay for them, whether you use them or not. They are communal assets and need maintenance, and that comes with a cost.
Connection and Isolation
Before you choose to live in a gated community, take a close look at the community itself. Who are the people you'll live with in this community? Since gated communities have their own rules and common assets, they develop their own community culture that may be different from the culture to which you are accustomed. If you enjoy this, it can be a positive experience. If the community culture is very different from your ideal community, this can be a problem.
Gated communities keep people out, such as vandals. They also keep people in. People tend to connect more often in these communities, since they have assets and the homeowners' association in common. Gates can also be a positive if you have small children and don't want them to wander very far, yet you would like them to experience the joys of playing freely in their community.
Consider Your Transportation Choices
Gated communities may not have ready access to public transportation, so you may find yourself in need of a car if you choose this option. If you love walkability, you'll want to examine your transportation choices carefully.
Are you looking for guidance as you buy a home? Turn to Open for Homes. Visit the blog at Open For Homes and get up-to-date information about home trends that will help you make the best choice for your family.