Gated Communities – 5 Common Problems and How to Solve Them
- 5 minute read
What are Gated Communities?
Gated communities are residential buildings or neighbourhoods with defined, controlled entrances for residents and guests to enter through. To help maintain the overall safety and unique characteristics of these communities, strict monitoring controls for residents, visitors, and vehicles are typically in place, with amenities being shared by all the residents in the community.
Are Gated Communities Better for Residents?
A sense of safety and peace of mind is one of the main reasons why families choose to live in gated communities, and understandably so. In typical neighbourhoods or buildings without gated access, surveillance and ensuring the safety of the community members isn’t always guaranteed. With controlled, centralized access points and an emphasis on security, gated communities make for a popular alternative for many families.
Challenges of Gated Communities.
Gated communities provide peace of mind to their residents, while helping to control access into the building. That said, without the proper systems in place to cater to residents’ needs, they can also create some challenges.
Thankfully, there are simple solutions to these common problems, as long as you have the right tools.
Whether for fun and entertainment or convenience, amenities are some of the biggest selling features of gated communities. In larger communities, however, overseeing the management and scheduling of these amenities can be a nightmare, especially for staff. With sometimes hundreds of tenants trying to book multiple different amenities at once, you will want to ensure that your team has the right tools for the job.
1VALET’s Building Operating System provides residents with a mobile app to book amenities, and staff with a platform to manage them. With the 1VALET Resident App, your residents are able to view amenities as well as their availability, and easily request to book them in only a few clicks. Amenity requests and scheduling are managed by 1VALET’s Property Management portal, which gives your staff a web-based tool to easily accept booking requests and manage scheduling from anywhere.
Watch how our amenity booking works:
Concierge services are typically associated with gated communities and play an important role in not only servicing the residents, but also acting as one of the first layers of security for the community. They also add a personalized element to your community and help in offering a friendly and seamless experience for guests and residents.
While concierge services are definitely recommended in gated communities, especially larger ones, they can be expensive. In some of the largest cities across Canada and the USA, the price of concierge services can average anywhere from $25-35 per hour. If you require one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, over the course of the year that can add up to over $200,000.
1VALET’s Building Operating System helps you save thousands on your concierge costs by allowing you to centralize your services, and have one concierge for your entire portfolio. This is done through our Smart Entry System, an innovative intercom system that includes a call concierge button.
Concierge calls from the Smart Entry System are redirected to our web-based Property Management Portal. From there, the concierge can view and chat with callers, unlock doors, and help provide a number of solutions to whatever needs the residents or guests may have – from anywhere. This solution allows you to have one concierge answering calls from all the Smart Entry Systems across your portfolio, helping to significantly reduce staff hours and save you thousands.
Managing parking, in particular for guests, can be one of the most challenging tasks within gated communities. Between providing visitor access, registering parking, and overseeing parking inventory, it can be a nightmare trying to manage parking if you don’t have the right tools.
1VALET’s platform provides property managers with a simple solution for parking management, through a combination of our Smart Entry System and Property Management Portal.
For guest access into the parking garage, virtual SMS text keys are provided by residents to the anticipated guests ahead of time, so they can simply let themselves in upon arrival. Once parked in a vacant visitor spot, the guest proceeds to the building entrance within the parking garage, where they are met by a 1VALET Smart Entry System. From there, they input their vehicle data, register their spot, and the inventory is automatically logged within the Property Management Portal.
Management of the parking is then overseen by staff or the property manager, who have total visibility to parking inventory, as well as the information of those taking up those spots, using the Property Management Portal. This creates a solution that is not only easy for staff, but that also simplifies the process for guests and visitors as well.
Parcel management is quickly becoming one of the biggest issues for gated communities. With the explosion of e-commerce as a result of the pandemic, gated communities and buildings are receiving hundreds of packages on a daily basis.
In many cases, these communities don’t have the capabilities to handle this many deliveries, and without a concierge or proper package management solution, package theft becomes a serious concern.
1VALET makes managing package deliveries in gated communities simple through our Smart Entry System and Package Room program. Our innovative Smart Entry System is the only intercom with patented Parcel Scanning technology that grants seamless and secure courier access into the building, simply by scanning the package.
From there, the courier is directed to the secure parcel room, where they are greeted by a second Smart Entry System that allows them to input recipient information and enter the room. Once deposited in the room, residents receive a delivery notification on their 1VALET Resident App with QR/access codes to enter the room and pick up the package.
1VALET’s parcel management solution virtually guarantees first time delivery, and helps ensure the residents of your gated community get their package the first time, every time.
Watch how our parcel room program works:
What’s the best way to communicate with residents when you have news or relevant information? Bulletin boards are barely looked at by residents, delivering letters to each unit can be time-consuming and wasteful, and not everyone frequently checks their emails.
So, how do you get your message across? As your community grows, communication could become hectic if a proper system isn’t put in place.
1VALET gives you the tools to ensure your messages never get missed and important information remains top of mind. Using our web-based Property Management Portal, staff can easily send direct or building-wide messages to residents, who receive them as notifications on their 1VALET Resident App. The Property Manager Portal also stores all these messages, so you have a detailed inbox of all your messages.
Can I turn my non-gated community into a gated one?
Of course you can.
As discussed, gated communities are residential buildings or communities with controlled access points to their entries. If your community doesn’t have controlled access at its entry points, adding a system like 1VALET is an easy way to provide peace of mind to residents, while addressing many of the other challenges your community is likely facing.