9 Key Steps For Buying In Gated Communities

Data shows homes in gated communities can earn an average of $30,000 more than comparable homes in non-gated subdivisions. But all real estate is local. Buyers should review market stats that include the gated community’s sold price trends as compared to those of other nearby comparable communities. Issues such as a mismanaged homeowner’s association, poor property management and high association fees can negate the value of the gates.

Buyers who perform the following due diligence can discover issues before investing in a gated community. Many also apply to HOA communities in general:

  1. Review the association’s financials and last year’s annual meeting notes. Look for red flags.
  2. Review community bylaws. Are they too restrictive or not enforced?
  3. Perform an online search of the community. Are comments and references positive or negative?
  4. Visit amenities and determine if fees are worth it. Calculate cost per use.
  5. Is there 24-hour, 7-days-a-week security at the gate? What is the protocol for handling situations.
  6. Will scheduling guests and service providers with the gate will become burdensome?
  7. Is there an alternative for exiting and entering if there’s be a problem with or at the gate.
  8. Visit at different times of day, including rush hour, to see if the gate gets backed up.
  9. Examine the level of care for community space.

When it comes time to sell your home, many gated communities don’t allow signage and open houses may be challenging. However, a good Realtor can work around these issues.

Finding a great-fit gated community is easier if you know the right questions to ask. If you’d like more information on gated communities in the Charleston, SC area, please contact me.

Susan Matthews is a Realtor serving the greater Charleston area with Coldwell Banker Carolinas. Contact her for more info on selling your home.


1905 Mooring Line Drive

Large lot with Wando River view on private cul-de-sac in prestigious gated community of Dunes West in Mount Pleasant, SC.

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