As an aspiring homeowner, should you opt for a property in a standalone building or in a gated community?
Let’s examine some of the upsides and downsides of both to help you make an informed decision.
With urbanization becoming more chaotic, home aspirants are increasingly pointing to gated communities.
While a gated community may provide a serene environment, it often comes at a price. This is because of numerous amenities provided along with it.
Upsides and downsides of gated communities and standalone buildings:
- These provide a relatively securer environment for the families, with guards and CCTV cameras, backup power, treated water facilities, commercial complexes and solar-powered heating systems being amongst other essential amenities.
- In light of the above, the Lifestyle Quotient gets a treat, with people able to meet and interact more with like-minded people, thereby building interpersonal relationships and business alliances
- The price factors. Various facilities such as a swimming pool, gymnasium, health center and sports fields, come at a premium, adding to the cost of living. Some gated communities are usually situated away from business centers, to provide a peaceful environment. On the flip of this, there may be challenges with commuting, sometimes. Have some examples in Kenya?
- Elaborate and meticulous security checks in gated communities, may also rattle and irritate people who come to visit the residents. More than checks etc. depending on the type of security may delay free movement and hassle some people including residents themselves.
- Require dedicated and serious individual maintenance if the homeowner is to realize a better resale value in future. Much neglected and dilapidated homes often drop value by a large margin.
- They can be developed within the city owing to the smaller land area needed. This increases demand and occupancy due to convenience
- Standalone projects don’t have high maintenance charges, especially if developers maintained the required construction quality, good code of ethics and observed industry code of practices
- A flat in a standalone building is more economical and affordable to purchase especially due to much smaller or non-existent common facilities. This becomes appealing to especially first-time homeowners through mortgage plans.
- When it comes to rentals, tenants who are bachelors and have limited financial resources, prefer standalone buildings. This is a plus to investors or first-time purchasers who would later prefer to let the house.
- Poor road networks and security. Due to majorly lack of adequate development resources by the developer, amenities without the standalone vicinity often lack. This could be poorly lit street, potholes or even insecurity.
- Inadequate facilities for the homeowner such as parking spaces where if not managed well results to ugly standoffs in the wake of rushes in the morning
- Often lack privacy and serene environment due to the limited space in the lift or up the staircases. In addition, living peacefully in your house could be a sore due to the troublesome resident neighbor next door as houses usually face each other at the entrance or by a mere wall.
In the end, the favourability of a Gated Community or Stand-alone Building property for a aspiring home-owner still depends largely on his/her needs, sentiments and economic position at the time of purchase.
While today, most families usually opt for gated communities owing to the added security and amenities, young bachelors and the like tend to favor standalone apartments because of their affordability and largely reduced regulations and by-laws.
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