Planned communities are communities built entirely from scratch in underdeveloped areas. Rooting their structure from Ancient Greece and continuing in the Middle Ages, planned communities are carefully mapped out to ensure they are sensibly developed in order to include green areas of open space, sufficient public facilities, and well designed public buildings. In that way, they often serve an ecological scope for the community.
The trend of planned communities in the United States started in the 1930s, took off in the 1950s and skyrocketed over the past years. Today, there many master planned communities nationwide, suggesting a great numbers of benefits related to them.
a) Pros of planned communities
First of all, a planned community is ideal for offering security. By eliminating high risk factors such as criminality, planned communities are the best place to raise kids and feel safe. The neighborhoods in planned communities are typically alienated from commercial areas and guarded with a gate and a guard or patrolled. Also, the entire community looks out for the safety of its inhabitants.
2. Shared Amenities
For people who cannot afford to have some luxury in their life, planned communities is a great option. Because all community members contribute to the shared amenities and benefits of the planned community, more money is collected toward improved amenities such as nice schools, parks, community centers, swimming pools, walking trails, and so on.
Planned communities are related with homeowner's associations that provide regular maintenance, gardening, lawn mowing and so on. In some cases, exterior repainting may also be provided.
4. Ability to Select Architecture Plan
In any other neighborhood, residents would have to abide by the architectural plan of the neighborhood. On the contrary, planned communities offer the option to select the architectural plan that matches the owner’s taste.
Although planned communities have so many benefits, there are also negative aspects associated to them.
b) Cons of Planned Communities
1. High Density
Because planned communities host a great number of similar properties, there is not too much space left for a back or a front yard. This raises the density rates in high levels causing traffic and congestion problems.
2. Hard to resell
Because properties in planned communities are in an ongoing development, it is hard to resell them, especially within a short period of time. The large number of properties often produces a big inventory of available properties, while, at the same time, new properties become available in the market.
3. High Maintenance Fees
High maintenance fees associated with planned communities and these fees have to be paid. Otherwise, the homeowner's association has the right to take legal action. Unpaid fees are becoming a lien against the property.
4. Limited Privacy
Because planned communities host a great number of properties and people into a relatively small area, residents live very close to one another and there is limited privacy.
Today, there are some great examples of planned communities nationwide including Washington, D.C., Mesa, AZ, Cobb, GA, Chula Vista, CA and others. However, when considering living in a planned community, peoples should weigh the pros and the cons and decide if a planned community is suitable for them.