GATED COMMUNITIES IN THE CHARLESTON SC AREA
The popularity of living in gated, or private communities has been rising in recent years, but Charleston offers few gated community options. Security is usually given as the biggest reason for choosing to live in a gated community, and that is perhaps why it has not really caught on here and there is a feeling of safety with communities dispersed back from the major highways. Among the other reasons people are attracted to living in gated communities is to protect property values and lifestyle with the rules and regulations that homeowners agree upon. Although again, many neighborhoods without the gates do have such covenants and restrictions also in place.
Many gated communities are designed with amenities built around a particular lifestyle, with golf courses, tennis, swimming pools, or equestrian facilities, and they tend to be located on some of the most desirable land in the area. Prime land, combined with careful planning and HOA rules create an environment where home values hold up extremely well.
Some popular gated communities include Dunes West, Ravens Run, Briars Creek, Bulls Bay, Victory Pointe, Wild Dunes, Briar's Creek, and Kiawah & Seabrook Island communities. The Bristol offers a gated condo community downtown. Mira Vista and the Regatta on James Island are more affordable options with gates west of downtown.
Aside from the gates or walls, the second most defining characteristic of gated or private communities is the Homeowner’s Association (HOA). The HOA is made up of all the owners of the development. The HOA is responsible for collection of the Association fees and making and enforcing the “rules” of the community.It is often also responsible for maintaining the public aspects of the community, such as streets, security, parks, etc.
The rules set by the HOA can vary a great deal, depending on the individual development. Typically the HOA will have rules pertaining to upkeep and appearance of homes within the development, specifying the colors of paint on outside walls, types of fencing, guidelines for landscaping and storage of boats or recreational vehicles.
Gated communities aren't for everyone. What are the negatives? Higher HOA fees to cover the security guard or gate maintenance, road maintenance - as it is now a private road, waiting each time you enter your neighborhood, and more difficulty for contractors to enter. But with strong protection of property values, increased security, less traffic and amenities for your specific lifestyle, they are appealing to more people each year.