How to turn your neighborhood into a gated community

  If you’ve watched the traffic in your neighborhood increase and are concerned about your family’s safety or are simply tired of solicitations and want higher property value, you may want to consider turning your neighborhood into a gated community.  Gated communities can offer a sense of privacy, increased security, higher property values and enhanced community with your neighbors. 

Step 1: Determining Security

Security is always a significant concern for gated communities.  A quality perimeter gate and wall can create a secure barrier between residents and the rest of the world.  You will also need to consider a reliable automatic gate opener for vehicles that will be going and coming.  A gate opener can provide basic control over who can access your community.  Another facet to consider when gating a community is the distance from the gate to the street which is called stacking distance.  Stacking distance will determine the number of vehicles that can line up at the gate at any given time.

You can also take your security and access control a notch higher through advanced secrity controls like surveillance cameras, guards, motion sensors, ALPR (automatic license plate recognition) and gate access control software.   ALPR can be used as a gate opener. 

Step 2: Check with Local Authorities

Gated communities often come with numerous rules and regulations that HOA’s will need to adhere to. Make sure that you consult your local authorities.  Check your local ordinances to see if it is possible to convert your existing neighborhood with public streets into a gated community.  Acquire the necessary permits, permissions, and paperwork when setting up your gated community. Depending on the location, visit the local development authority and look into any and all necessary building permits.

Step 3: Hire a Real Estate Lawyer

While you can acquire the paperwork yourself, it’s a good idea to hire the services of a real estate lawyer. A good real estate lawyer will help you get updated with the rules of a gated community and ensure that your paperwork is legal, complete and adequate.

Step 4: Calculate the Cost

Before you move forward, it is wise to estimate the cost that each household will need to pay to accommodate the upgrade to a gated community. Gated communities attract expensive homeowner association fees for things like private security and road maintenance. This may also include annual maintenance fees and upfront costs for the gate.

Step 5: Talk to your Neighbors

Once you have gathered all the requirements and have a better understanding of what it takes.  You can now turn your attention to talking to the neighborhood community to see how they feel about it.  It is essential to consult your neighbors to see if they are open to the idea of a gated community. You can call a neighborhood meeting and explain your concept and what you intend to achieve.  You will likely need to petition your neighbors and have at least 60 percent of them agree.


When it comes to creating a gated community, you need to pay attention to the needs and requirements of your prospective buyers. Make sure that your gated community portrays all the essential qualities like safety and security. With property crime on the rise it is important that we do not compromise our family’s safety with substandard neighborhood security. While it is inarguable that turning a regular community into gated community can be lengthy and expensive, it is worth noting that living in a gated community can help lessen the possibility of crime.