Have you ever wondered about what a gated community is? Well, it is basically a cluster of houses nestled within a premise that is secured with the main gate and has several facilities that are available for use only by the residents. The main benefit of a gated community is the safety aspect. Moreover, many gated communities in India are luxurious and full of plush recreational and functional amenities that are very beneficial to the people living inside. Not only in India, now these types of living arrangements are popular throughout the world and many people choose to purchase properties in them. Despite the fact that living in such prestigious properties sounds high end and luxe- it is important to weigh the advantages as well as the disadvantages of a gated community.
What is a Gated Community?
Gated communities offer a sense of exclusiveness with superior quality buildings and facilities that are only accessible to owners. Outsiders are not allowed to use them so in a sense, they are like an exclusive country club. Often, people tend to savour the fact that what is only available to them, is of a high-end nature and they revel in that. In spite of wanting to acquire such homes to live in, it is imperative to note that they can sometimes be expensive and out of the affordability range for many.
Controlled entrances for bikes, cars, pedestrian traffic, etc. are demarcated in such communities and the insides are usually enclosed by high borders such as fences and brick walls so that unsolicited outsiders cannot barge in. Unlike an independent villa or house where you might be secluded and away from others, gated community homes are often close to each other, and a neighbourhood camaraderie is often formed amongst residents. Besides, gated community prices in India are higher than apartments in multi-storey buildings so they attract the type of people who have similar financial backgrounds.
Many gated communities form internal committees and welfare associations in which members can be part of and organise certain events which further help bring residents close. More than metropolitan cities, these are more popular in south India and north India where independent houses and bungalows have been more coveted.
Type of Amenities You Can Expect in Gated Communities
Gated communities have a central security system in which the main entrance is monitored and governed by a security guard. This cordons off any unwanted outsiders, giving a secure and safe atmosphere for residents. Internally, many facilities within such premises are great for homeowners. Mentioned below are some of the many facilities you can expect when asking what amenities you could expect in a gated community.
- Swimming pools – Indoor and outdoor pools, it is a great place to beat the heat.
- Club House - A place where you can spend some time socialising with neighbours.
- Fitness centre – A fully loaded gym with all necessary equipment so you don’t have to spend exorbitant money on a public gym membership.
- Banquet halls – Exclusive halls in which you can host events and parties.
- Sports centres – Small and large courts to play sports such as badminton, squash, basketball, tennis, football, cricket, etc.
- Indoor sports – Rooms demarcated with equipment for indoor sports such as table tennis, billiards, carrom, etc.
- Card room – A room where you can play card and board games.
- Restaurants – Small eateries within the premises for ultra-luxurious communities.
- Cafes – A cafe within the premises for gourmet dining.
- Kids Play Area - Areas with swings, slides, etc. for children to play in.
- Joggers Lane – Area where people can go for walks and jogs
- Bicycle lane – A specific lane for bike riders
- Libraries – Full of books and videos for residents to spend time reading and watching movies.
- Spa – Spa and salon services within the premises at slashed prices.
- Valet parking – Valet parking services for residents as well as guests
- Private elevators – In super luxurious communities, personal elevators are offered for each home.
- Water supply – 24/7 water supply
- Power Backup – Power back up to ensure no electrical failure affects the comforts.
- Security – CCTV coverage throughout the common areas.
The above-mentioned pointers are just some of the many possible amenities one can expect when living in a gated community. While there are small and large communities, the amenities vary from one to another and largely depend on the location, area, price, and level of luxury.
What is the price range in a gated community? | Gated Community Price in India
It is a burning question that anyone will have at this point so that they can decide whether they can even continue their quest towards owning a home in a specific gated community. As expected of such properties, houses in gated communities are on the higher side owing to all the facilities they offer. However, these prices largely vary depending on the area of the house, location of the community, type of facilities offered, builder's reputation and mainly the target audience for which each community is built. In large cities such as Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Pune, Hyderabad, etc. the prices for homes in gated communities can range from ₹75 lakhs to ₹20 crores. On the other hand, in smaller cities, they can go lower than this and sometimes, depending on the amenities and facilities offered, they can even go way higher than this estimated range.
Advantages & Disadvantages of Gated Communities
While the idea of living in such a premise might seem attractive and glamorous, it is important to weigh the pros and cons of buying a house in a gated community. Mentioned below are the advantages and disadvantages of the same.
Advantages of Gated Communities
The most obvious pro of living behind the rock-solid gates is that they are monitored by security guards and cameras. Many of such communities are guarded by password-protected codes. In this way, unsolicited outsiders and burglars are kept at bay. Children and women can also roam around freely without the worry of perverts or potential kidnappers.
Most gated communities have fencing and large walls dotting the borders which do not allow unwanted intruders to enter the premises. Privacy is numero uno in such properties.
3. Private Parking
Only members are allowed to park their cars in designated spots which result in less crowding. Many communities have specific areas for visitors' parking, so it is a win-win situation for residents.
4. Stellar Amenities
The other main pro of living in gated communities is the assortment of amenities offered. Ranging from sports, banquet halls, kid’s play areas, jogging tracks, swimming pools, private elevators and much more, the facilities of such properties are a shoo-in.
Residents never have to worry about the upkeep of gated communities as all the common areas along with the exteriors, lawns, etc. are always well maintained by in-house personnel.
Disadvantages of Gated Communities
1. Inconvenience for Guests
Due to advanced security, guests of residents might have to deal with certain inconveniences such as giving their names, numbers and mentioning their reason for a visit. The member who has invited them might even need to be called to ensure that they have approved this visit.
Overall, owning a home in a gated community is more expensive than an apartment in a multi-storey building or even an independent house.
3. High Maintenance Costs
Due to the stellar amenities and high-level security services, maintenance costs for gated community homes lean on a higher side.
Gated communities have a uniform external design and the homeowner’s association (HOA) would levy certain restrictions which would prevent residents from making design changes in their common areas. Main doors, balcony colours, windows and external walls might not be allowed a change in colour or structure.
5. Difficulties in Deliveries
While the whole of India is practically going online, ordering food, shopping, etc. requires people to come and deliver it to your doorstep. In gated communities, this may not be allowed, and you might have to make a run to the security every time you have an item delivered to you.
Due to the sheer size required to build a gated community, it will often be located away from the city centre and more towards the outskirts of a city. This also reduces expensive land costs in cities.
Tips to Buy a Home in a Gated Community
While this blog mentioned all the possible details that can aid a potential homeowner, it is helpful to know a few tips to buy a property in a gated community. Have a look at a few of these tips as stated below.
- A house in a gated community should be located more towards the centre so that daily movements of entry and exit do not disturb the harmony.
- Ensure that you have clarity on the monthly or quarterly cost of maintenance including taxes so that there are no discrepancies later.
- Go with a reputed builder so you are aware of their quality and services and can ensure the constant maintenance of the same throughout.
- In addition to gates, check the main entry and exit points, and any other to ensure the safety quotient.
- Due to gated communities being located further from the city centre, ensure that your commute time to work and other places within the city is not too tedious.
- Quite stringent in their rules, you might not be allowed to have loud parties or have many guests staying over. Confirm this before purchase if you like to entertain.
- You might not be able to make design changes to fenestrations, exteriors and in some cases, even in the interiors. Make sure you are ok with this before you go ahead and buy.
Gated communities are convenient, luxurious and a status symbol for residents. However, they can work for some and not for others. This blog covers all the possible pros and cons of such communities so you can make an informed decision before taking the final plunge.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)
Can I invite my friends and family whenever I want if I live in a gated community?
Yes. You can invite them at your convenience, but you would need to inform the security in advance.
Is it extremely expensive to live in a gated community?
There are many facilities offered by gated communities making the standard of living as well as the cost of living higher than normal. However, there are small and large communities and differ on their luxury levels so you can purchase one more to the tune of your budget.
What are the safety measures taken by a gated community?
While safety measures differ from one community to another, general ones include a guard at the entrance and exit gate, CCTV cameras in all common areas, an intercom system to announce a visitor and restrictions of delivery personnel at the main gate itself.
Is there any city centre located in gated communities?
Usually, gated communities are located further from the city centres but in cities such as Mumbai and Delhi, there are many gated communities in the centre.
Can I choose to change the direction of my main door as per Vastu?
It is highly doubtful that you can change the positioning or colour of your main entrance door, but the restriction differs from community to community.