Definition of "What is a gated community?"

Kathryn  Allen Curry real estate agent

Written by

Kathryn Allen Curryelite badge icon

S.T. Allen Realty Company Inc

If you’re looking for a home for you and your family and you’re thinking of investing in a gated community, let’s first understand what a gated community is. A gated community is a residential development that has regulated access for pedestrians, bicycles, and cars, making it accessible only to those that live within the community, their visitors, and delivery services. 

 

However, the way in which this access is limited is spelled out in the name as the community is gated. A gated community can have one or several entrance points (the gates) and they are generally in a closed vicinity of walls/fences.

Specifics of gated communities

The definition of a gated community is a neighborhood or collection of homes that are restricted to the general public by security guards and gates. That is from where the appeal comes. With security guards at every gate or entrance, safety ratings are usually high even if the neighborhood right outside of the gated community has lower safety ratings. These ratings are what happens because the community has a border that only residents and visitors can cross. In some gated communities, residents are given a remote control for the entrance gate to allow visitors to pass the gate. There is also the security guard that asks permission from the residents to let someone within the community.

 

Prospective residents can find gated communities in any location, from large cities to the rural landscape, and they can also vary in sizes, some larger than nearby towns. The size of houses also varies, but the residents that choose to live in gated communities are those who are willing to pay the extra cost for the exclusivity. That exclusivity, coupled with the security of these gated communities, is what also attracts A-listers, celebrities, or high-ranking officials as they don’t have to worry about the press, paparazzi, or stalkers.

 

Every gated community has a homeowner’s association (HOA) that brings with it incredible amenities that your family will undoubtedly enjoy. Private parks, swimming pools, playgrounds for kids, dog parks, or even hiking trails are just some of the amenities included through the HOA. They do come with a monthly HOA fee, but their accessibility might make the extra penny worth it.


Gated communities are not necessarily master-planned communities. If they exist within a city already developed by neighborhoods and apartment complexes, it would be incredibly costly and unsustainable to bulldoze an already built area to build a gated community. They can, however, be master-planned communities if the land upon which those developers build them is undeveloped. Usually developed on blank canvases, the cities with the best master-planned communities find empty stretches of land where they can make an oasis, and there are plenty of options from which to choose.

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