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7 mistakes to avoid when buying your first home

At Jan 29, 2018

The residential sector has been thriving, supported by factors like a rapidly growing middle class. This has seen an increase in disposable income, allowing more people to afford to buy their own homes. Owning a home is the ultimate dream for many, and affordable housing is the solution for those who cannot build for themselves due to varying factors. It helps that there’s renewed focus on affordable housing from both public and private sectors. With that said, buying a house is exciting, but one should keep in mind that it is a long-term investment. The road to the dream is paved with many potential mistakes, but these can be avoided if the process is approached with caution.

Here are seven potential land mines first-time home-buyers should aim to sidestep.

1. Making a trade-off between address and functionality

As much as getting a piece of real estate within the ‘right’ address or neighbourhood is recommended, this should not be a priority. Many people lose sight of getting value for money just to own a house in a neighbourhood they’d want their friends to know about. To avoid the blind allure of crowd choices, list what your ideal home should be like, as well as the ideal location – but prioritise getting value for your money.

2. Banking on planned infrastructure

Many real estate agents sell property on the basis of a ‘Government-promised’ access road to the tarmac. Implementation of such infrastructure projects takes a considerable amount of time. Weigh if the benefits of the promise are worth the wait.

3. Following the crowd blindly

Unfortunately, some people choose where to live based on where people of their community or economic class tend to gravitate towards. Considering that the house you buy could end up being your lifetime residence, plan your purchase with what matters to you in mind. The important things could be proximity to your workplace, your family, or amenities like schools, hospitals and police stations.

4. Not checking the credibility of the developer

Does your developer have a track record of quality finishes or finishing in time if you’re buying off-plan? Make a point of visiting the developer’s previous houses or apartments to assess the quality of work and maintenance of communal areas once the project is done. This will give you a clearer idea of the actual product and answer questions, such as whether the developer takes up the role of facilities management.

5. Ignoring the other costs of the house

The devil is in the details. One should always keep in mind that there are other costs in addition to the buying price. These include legal fees, stamp duty, maintenance costs and service charges, which more often than not are largely dependent on the neighbourhood and type of project built. Ensure you understand how much other developments in the area cost, and whether the deal you’re considering is too expensive or is in tandem with the market average.

6. Future functionality

What do you hope the size of your family will be in five years’ time. Will you need to move into a bigger house? Will the children move out and leave you with a nearly empty five-bedroom house? Is it a house you can comfortably grow old in? These are important to think about. For instance, for a couple approaching retirement and whose children no longer need to live in their parents’ house, would getting a three-bedroom villa with two domestic servants’ quarters (DSQs) work better than a five-bedroom house? With the first option, the DSQs can be let out or used to accommodate guests.

7. Ignoring zoning regulations

When investing in a home, conduct thorough land-use due diligence for the area. What are the possibilities that the face of the area will change in the future? If it’s a low-rise designated area, are the regulations strict or controlled enough? Are there upcoming high-rise buildings that have been approved? As a first-time buyer, chances are that you’re more susceptible to hidden mistakes that could be financially and emotionally expensive. However, as tedious as the process can be, you must continuously educate yourself to remain in the know. Talking to real estate experts and reading research reports would help. Additionally, before parting with your money, ensure that you are financially stable to make the purchase. To avoid future financial constraints, budget and get your finances in order first and then identify a home based on the budget – not the other way round. For mortgage buyers, ensure you understand the size of mortgage you are eligible for from your financier. A mortgage is reliant on factors like the size of your income and the house deposit. More importantly, understand the repayment plan, which is also determined by your age and current interest rates.

Source: Read more at:


7 Dumb Reasons People Can’t Buy a Home

At Jan 15, 2018

Buying a home—especially if it’s your first—can be a lot like losing weight in the sense that people end up doing, well, some pretty dumb stuff in the process. But while desperate dieters might waste money on “magical” weight-loss pills or silly exercise equipment (remember the shake weight?), misguided home buyers could be doing far more serious damage—like undermining their ability to purchase a house at all. Don’t be one of them! We asked real estate agents to shed light on some of the dumbest reasons people can’t buy a home. The good news? These flubs are easily avoidable. Read on and beware.

Dumb reason No. 1: Waiting to line up financing

Your first step in the home-buying process should be to meet with a mortgage lender to discuss your financing options, says Benny Kang, a real estate agent in Irvine, CA.

“You don’t truly know what you can afford until you meet with a lender,” says Kang. In other words, just because you think you can buy a $1 million house doesn’t mean you can actually get a loan to purchase a home that nice.

Dumb reason No. 2: Using a fly-by-night mortgage lender

The mortgage industry is rife with scams—including a slew of fake or unreliable lenders. Placing your trust in a bad lender can cause a deal to fall through. That explains why “sometimes sellers reject offers because of the buyer’s lender,” says Philadelphia real estate agent Kathy Conway. To make sure your financing is rock-solid, ask your real estate agent for lender recommendations instead of, say, just Googling it. And read up to know your mortgage basics.

Dumb reason No. 3: Getting pre-qualified rather than pre-approved

Pre-qualification and pre-approval might sound similar, but they’re not. Essentially, anyone can get pre-qualified for a loan, because it only involves having a conversation with a lender about the state of your finances (no documents are exchanged). Getting pre-approved, meanwhile, involves the lender gathering all necessary documentation—your tax returns, bank statements, pay stubs, and more—packaging the loan, and submitting the file to an underwriter for review. If everything checks out, the lender will issue you a written commitment for financing up to a certain loan amount that’s good for up to 90 or 120 days.

When you submit an offer on a home, you’ll need to include a pre-approval letter from your lender, says Conway.

“Educated sellers won’t even entertain an offer unless the buyer has a letter of pre-approval” from a reliable lender, Conway says.

Dumb reason No. 4: Shopping outside your price range

“It sounds obvious, but some home buyers just have trouble sticking to a budget,” says Kang. Therefore, resist the temptation to shop online for homes that are simply outside your price range (i.e., how much you’ve been pre-approved for).

Dumb reason No. 5: Making lowball offers in a seller’s market

You need to rely on your real estate agent to determine whether a house that you’re interested in has a fair listing price. (Your agent will do this by performing a comparative market analysis, which entails looking at recently sold properties that are comparable to the house that’s up for sale.) If a home is priced well, it might make sense to offer full price, says Kang. Moreover, “if you’re in a seller’s market, making a crazy lowball offer can piss off the seller” and kill your offer, says Kang.

Dumb reason No. 6: Making a big purchase while in escrow

Some home buyers make the mistake of opening new credit accountswhile they’re in the process of buying a house. But purchasing a big-ticket item like a car or a boat while you’re buying a house can jeopardize your financing. Why? Because your mortgage lender’s underwriter is going to re-evaluate your finances and recheck your credit report shortly before closing in order to determine that you’re still able to qualify for the loan.

“Even buying a fridge can throw off your credit or debt-to-income ratio,” says Conway. Translation: Don’t make any big purchases until after you close on the house.

Dumb reason No. 7: Not budgeting for closing costs

If you don’t have enough cash to cover closing costs, you won’t make it to settlement; and if that’s the case, you could lose your earnest money deposit. Thus, make sure to get an estimate from your mortgage lender of what your closing costs will be before making an offer on a property (currently, this is legally required—just make sure to read it).

Closing costs vary widely by location, but they typically total 2% to 7% of the home’s purchase price. So on a $250,000 home, your closing costs could come to $5,000 to $17,500. Both buyers and sellers usually pitch in on closing costs, but buyers shoulder the lion’s share of the load (3% to 4% of the home’s price) compared with sellers (1% to 3%), so you need to make sure you have enough cash on hand to pay your portion.


Source:  8 Dumb Reasons People Can’t Buy a Home

 | Jul 11, 2017


Buying property in Kenya

At Jan 11, 2018

Foreigners can buy ‘commercial class’ land in Kenya. This type of land is for income or revenue-making purposes. Foreigners are allowed to acquire this and build on it.

‘Agricultural land’ or farm lands cannot be acquired by foreign individuals. ‘Agricultural land’ is usually owned by indigenous people. If purchase is made through a company – the majority of which must be Kenyan-owned – then it is allowed. The land will be bought under the company’s name.

There are freehold and leasehold types of land. Mostly, land in Kenya is government-owned. This can be leased for 50 to 99 years.

The first step to purchasing property in Kenya is to hire a real estate lawyer. A title search on the property is very important as many areas are not registered. Once property has been chosen and a price is agreed upon, the lawyer prepares a sale agreement as a conditional preliminary contract, signed by both parties. Upon execution, the buyer pays a deposit of 10% to 30% of the purchase price, which is usually refundable if the seller defaults on the transaction.

Closing is usually within 90 days from signing. During this time, the seller must obtain a clearance certificate from the municipality. This is presented to the buyer to ensure that all local taxes and utility bills have been settled. The lawyer then files a Draft Transfer at the Lands Office and the stamp duty is paid. An official from the Ministry of Lands will come to inspect the property, verify its condition, and make sure that the sale price is in accordance with its actual value. These steps will take approximately two to four weeks to complete.

The lawyer submits the documents to the Lands Office to be able to register the transfer, including the original title held by the seller, clearance certificates, consent transfer and the form for valuation for stamp duty. At the same time, the buyer settles the remaining balance with the vendor. Taxes and lawyer fees is paid within 30 days from closing.

It is possible to purchase in Kenya without being in the country. One can assign a lawyer to go through the whole process on the buyer’s behalf through a power of attorney.

The whole process for the titling of the property can typically be completed in around 72 days.

Source: Global Property guide



10 Ways to Know You Found the Right Home

At Dec 19, 2017

It is normal to harbor fears about making the wrong decision when you’re looking at homes to buy. Many first-time home buyers wonder how they will know when they have found the right house. Here are 3 preliminary things you should know about finding the right house:

  • First, an ethical real estate agent will never, ever, pressure into buying a house.
  • Second, you will instinctively know it.
  • Third, you may want to sleep on the decision. Don’t.

If You Have Found the Right House, Can You Sleep On It?

Right now you’re probably wondering how you will know that you have found the right house if you don’t sleep on it. What’s wrong with sleeping on it? Everything is wrong with sleeping on it. Trust yourself. Don’t second guess your own instincts. Your instincts will not steer you in the wrong direction.

Have you heard the phrase: shuffle your feet, lose your seat? Somebody else could buy your house out from under you while you’re counting sheep. You’re not the only home buyer looking for a house to buy with your specific criteria. You might not know it, but there are other home buyers with similar intentions looking at homes today in the very neighborhoods where you want to buy.

The last thing you want to hear your buyer’s agent say is another buyer made an offer and it was accepted minutes before your offer was submitted. Happens all the time, too.

Unless you’re buying a brand new home, there is not another home around the corner just like the home that now you can’t buy. When you find that house, buy it.

10 Ways to Know You Have Found the Right House

  • You Want to Go Inside the HousePart of the excitement of looking at homes is not knowing which could be your new home when you pull up to the curb. Is it the one on the left, or does the house on the right strike your fancy? If it is the house on the right, and you like it better than the house on the left, that could be a sign. It means there is something about this house that appeals to you.
  • The House Embraces You the Moment You EnterWithin 3 seconds of entering the house, you will know whether it feels warm and comforting. Does it seem to speak to you? Does the house invite you to explore? Does it feel, well . . . right? Like home? Then it probably is.
  • You Don’t Feel Funny in the BathroomSometimes buyers feel so uncomfortable near a bathroom that they won’t walk into the room. They are afraid to let their feet touch that bathroom floor. They will stand outside, grab the door frame, and poke their heads in for a minute. If you can walk into the bathroom and feel compelled to open the shower door or stroke the vanity marble, this is your house.
  • You Are Possessive About the HouseMaybe your agent points out a flaw and says, “There is a stain in the kitchen sink,” and you want to slap her face for saying something so mean about this house. You want to defend every flaw you see. If you even see the flaws, because right now, flaws do not matter.
  • You Begin to Envision Furniture ArrangementIf you walk into the master bedroom and immediately can envision your bed against a particular wall, this might be your house. If you find yourself thinking that the living room window is a perfect spot to put a tree come Christmas, you’re already hooked.
  • You Can See Yourself Painting a Wall Your Favorite ColorPerhaps deep purple is not your favorite color. Maybe it’s blue. Maybe you’re thinking those purple walls in the kid’s room would look better in a pale blue jean color. In fact, you might even know the name of the paint color you plan to use because you’ve been thumbing through Pottery Barn catalogs and this home looks just like those.
  • The House Fits Your Basic NeedsThe dynamics might not hit every bullet point on your list, but it meets the basic requirements. The house has the number of rooms and space you need. Maybe it doesn’t have a garage, and in a flash of enlightenment you realize that buying a house with a garage is not important. Maybe you suddenly realize you could build a garage. Being flexible about which issues are deal-killers is a good quality.
  • You Want to Stop Looking at Other HomesAll of the other homes you’ve been looking at no longer appeal to you. The homes on that list you’ve been carrying around seem insignificant. Moreover, the homes you had previously rated a #8 have now fallen to a #2 rating. The homes you have seen pale in comparison. You would feel like a traitor to this home if you went to visit other homes. This is it.
  • You Can’t Wait to Brag About This House to Your FriendsIt would not be unusual for you to snap a few photos and text message your best friend before you’ve finished touring the home. You feel excited. The excitement seems to manifest itself. You shoot more photographs. Suddenly your phone is in burst mode and before you realize it, you have hundreds of photos.
  • Every Thought in Your Mind Tells You to Buy That HouseExcept for that nagging little thought that wonders if you should sleep on it, every other thought in your head says this is the perfect house for you. You are consumed. You can’t think about anything else apart from owning this house. Dinner? Who needs to eat? You need this house. You wonder if you should be committed or see a doctor. Yup, this is your house


Source: The balance


Updated March 12, 2017

Organizing Your Pantry in 5 Steps

At Dec 14, 2017
  1. Get Started

    Kitchen pantryOrganizing your pantry can be a relief for the home cook. Knowing where your go-to items are, and have a system in place to re-stock the pantry when necessary will help you out on many fronts: with being more organized at home, in planning meals, and with grocery shopping.

    Get motivated. 

    If you’ve been putting this task off for a while, I’ve got three really great reasons for you to finally tackle it this weekend. Spoiler alert: it will save you money, it will save you time, and it will teach you about your shopping, eating and cooking habits. This is valuable information when you’re trying to budget and meal plan.

    2. Declutter Shelf-by-Shelf

    Declutter the pantry shelf by shelf
    Getty Images/Astronaut Images

    The first step in the pantry organization process (after deciding to get your kitchen pantry organized) is to declutter the pantry.

    Commit to having a clutter-free pantry.

    Why? It’s just so much easier when you don’t have to shuffle around clutter to get to the stuff you really need.  You’ll have less waste because less food will go bad, you’ll save money because you won’t buy duplicates, and you’ll save time because getting dinner on the table is a lot faster when you can quickly find what you need.

    Empty the pantry.

    Take everything out of the pantry including food, food storage containers and junk/trash that may have accumulated.

    Dust the pantry, starting with the highest shelf, and then wipe down each shelf one at a time. Be sure to cover the tops of doors and check the ceiling for cobwebs.

    Starting sorting.

    Line up the food items in one space so you can see everything at once. Suggestions: kitchen table, dining room table, or even the floor. This way you’ll be able to spot duplicates, spoiled foods and get a general sense of how much space each type of item will need.

    Common Pantry Clutter Culprits:


    Those Harry & David gift bags are delightful to receive in the mail, but once I’m done eating the canned nuts, the scone mixes and bags of dried fruit tend to go stale in the back of my pantry. One way to combat this is to bake any mixes and give them right back to the person who gifted you in the first place.

    One-Off Purchases

    Like the saffron example I shared or anything else that strikes your fancy walking through the grocery store. You may be thinking “I’d like the be the kind of person who eats anchovies more often.” Again, only buy new/interesting items if you are committed to using them right away.

    Junk Food

    I never buy junk food because I don’t think a bag of potato chips or a box of cookies would survive more than a few hours in my pantry without being devoured. But if you regularly buy junk food you may find bags of Lays potato chips about ¼ full of crumbs, some stale popcorn remnants, or broken cookie pieces.

    Assess each item one-by-one and ask yourself these questions:

    • Has this expired? If yes, throw it out.

    • Do I use this? If no, throw it out.

    • Do I like this? If no, throw it out.

    Even if you have all of the pantry space in the world, why would you want to keep extra (slowly rotting) food? You can find a better use for that space

    3. Arrange Items

    Kitchen pantry ideas
    Getty Images/Fotosearch

    When I used to move into new apartments each year, I would line things up in my pantry and kitchen cabinets by size and height. This makes sense on a visual level but doesn’t exactly make for the best organizing scheme.

    Arrange items in your pantry by group, not by size.

    Here are some common groupings:

    • Cans of beans and soups
    • Bags of snack foods
    • Bottles of oils and vinegar
    • Jars of spices
    • Boxes of grains (rice, cereal, pasta)

    Not only will this look logical in your pantry, it makes sense for cooking, too.

    I have a vinegar group which includes: champagne, apple cider, balsamic, rice wine. To that mix I’ve added white cooking wine, olive and grape oil, and an olive oil spray. The bottles vary in height and width, but now when I want to make a salad dressing, everything I need is occupying the same space in my pantry.

    Then, arrange items at the right height in your pantry.

    First, keep the items you use most regularly in your prime pantry real estate. This means the space between your shoulders and knees. It’s easier to reach and easier to put back after use.

    I recommend items you buy in bulk be stored in the bottom of the pantry (because these items are typically heavy), snacks be up top so you have to reach for them, and spices at eye-level.

    4.  Choose the Right Storage Solutions

    Kitchen pantry storage
    Getty Images/Fuse

    Choosing the right pantry storage solutions is a biggie. I firmly believe you can properly store everything in your kitchen pantry without the aid of any storage solution. Too often people (including me!) reach for their credit card to solve a problem they could easily fix with extra 5 minutes to think it through and some elbow grease. That said, kitchen storage solutions do come in handy if you’re for more space.

    5. Maintain Organization

    Kitchen pantry organization
    Getty Images/Fotosearch

    Maintain your new organizing scheme by consistently going through your pantry and decluttering (see: Step 2). If you do this regularly, you may not have to repeat the entire process of emptying and cleaning the pantry all over again. I recommend the following schedule:

    • Daily / Weekly – declutter
    • Monthly – declutter and re-group
    • Seasonally – declutter, re-group, re-fit storage solutions

    This schedule will depend on how often you cook and the size of your pantry space. I like to go through mine once a week while I am planning meals (See: Meal Planning Makeunder)

    Hint: The more often you declutter your pantry, the less time the process will take in the future.

    Source: The Spruce by Elizabeth Larkin


10 Living Room Design Tips

At Dec 11, 2017
  1. Set the Mood with Color

The colors you choose for your living room will affect how guests feel in the space. Colors can energize or relax the space, depending on how intense they are and how warm or cool they are.

A serene scheme of soft blue and white makes this spacious living room feel calm, cool, and collected–a gracious setting for elegant gatherings. A light tan carpet underfoot warms the space and keeps the cool tones in balance.

  1. Finish the Walls and Ceilings

Traditionally, living room walls receive more elaborate or formal treatment than other rooms because the room is a public space. To make it a welcoming room that expresses your personality, choose wallcoverings or treatments that reflect your style.

The walls in this room are wallpapered with a chic print. The effect brings warmth and texture to the walls and gives them a look of antiquity.

  1. Add Character with Architectural Trimwork

Trimwork serves practical purposes, covering the seams where floors and ceilings meet walls and supporting the structure around openings. But these elements serve aesthetic purposes too. The style of trimwork helps give your home a distinctive look, whether classical, contemporary, old-world, or regional.

Projecting lintels over the door and windows, a deep cornice, and a paneled and beamed vaulted ceiling combine to give this white-washed living room a sense of place.

  1. Choose Stylish, Comfortable Flooring

In keeping with the function of the living room as a public space, choose a floor covering that provides comfort underfoot and makes a design statement as well. This vibrant wall-to-wall carpet lays the foundation for a refined mix of florals and stripes.

If you prefer a less bold floor, choose a solid neutral flooring that allows attention to focus on furniture or art. Hardwood floors with area rugs are one of the most popular choices for living room floors, but ceramic tile, stone tile, and full carpeting work too.

  1. Create a Focal Point

A focal point anchors the living room and helps draw you into the space. A fireplace is a natural focal point, symbolizing hearth and home, but in most living spaces, the television is the true center of attention. To keep them from competing, pair them up. A beautiful view or a stunning piece of art can also serve as a room’s focal point.

Here a the fireplace becomes the central point in this living room that features a simple and chic look.

  1. Arrange Furniture for Conversation

Living rooms are gathering spaces, so use furniture arrangement to promote conversation and interaction. Pull seating pieces away from the walls and arrange them to face each other.

If you have a large living room, break it into two conversational groups for a more comfortable, intimate feeling. Chairs and ottomans that can be pulled into the group as needed allow you to expand the circle and still keep the intimacy.

  1. Plan for Inviting Lighting

Lighting in the living room should be geared toward creating a relaxed, comfortable mood. Aim for layers of light, and position light sources so they form roughly a triangle to ensure good distribution of illumination.

Table lamps that focus the light down will encourage people to sit down and relax. The overlapping arcs of light illuminate the seating instead of the upper walls, sending the message to sit.

  1. Dress the Windows–or Not

Although heavy window treatments are mostly a thing of the past, living rooms are the place for elaboration and luxury if you’re so inclined. This combination of relaxed shades and floor-to-ceiling draperies is understated yet elegant.

The elegance comes from the generous use of fabric in the draperies–they’re not fancy, but the thick folds and puddling ends communicate luxury. The shades block light and provide privacy when desired.

  1. Design a Media Center

If your living room is also your family room, watching TV may be the main use of the room. Whether you have the newest model or an older one, incorporate it into the room’s design so that it’s a feature but not dominant.

In this living room, a built in bookcase is the perfect spot to accommodate the television.

  1. Accessorize with Art and Collections

Living room walls come alive when you use them to display art or collections that you love. Group items for impact, and hang them low enough to relate to nearby furnishings or architecture. The most common mistake in hanging pictures is putting them too high.

This grouping of four large prints hangs low enough to connect visually to the sofa. The painting on the adjacent wall hangs at standing eye level and relates to the lamp in the corner.

Source: Better Homes & Gardens


Upkeep of Common Areas in a Gated Community – Lawns, Gyms and Swimming Pools

At Dec 07, 2017

Maintaining common areas in an apartment complex or a gated community is a continuous process, and every single individual living in the community should do their part in order to live that dream life of perfection.

Every apartment is expected to have a professional maintenance crew, who will be responsible for keeping the premises clean and green. However, this does not mean that individual responsibility does not count and is not necessary. Residents will need to maintain their exteriors and common amenities well, in order to enjoy the benefits of living in a collective community that looks good, feels good and functions great!

Living in an apartment complex is all about learning to co-exist in peace, as you will be sharing many public spaces like gyms, swimming pools, lawns and even roads with the other members of the community. Due to the sheer volume of people using these spaces, maintaining them properly becomes an aspect of utmost importance. There are a few basic tips that any resident can follow to maintain these places.

Workout Rooms and Gyms

Most apartment complexes will have common workout rooms, and you will need to do your part in maintaining these properly after every single workout session. Although you need not roll up your sleeves and fix broken equipment, there are some basic things you can do.

  • Clean all equipments once you’re done using them. Sometimes all that gym equipments need is a proper wipe, because sweat and perspiration will tend to collect on them during a workout session. Take a separate cloth along with you and wipe all the dumbbells and weights after working out.
  • Equipments that have gears will need to be oiled regularly for their proper functioning. Take time off to tell the gym in charge if you notice any equipment is not doing great. This also gives the administrators of the gym that you’re participating in the upkeep of it, rather than just using the equipment and “getting them to do their job”.
  • Nuts and bolts that are loose can prove disastrous, so tighten all the bolts once in a while to ensure proper safety. Keep the administration informed, or talk to your trainer or instructor about the equipment. If some equipment seem overstrained, its best to put up a small note on it or by the side, asking other users to treat the equipment with care until it is repaired or replaced.


A beautiful lawn can grab many eyeballs, and maintaining a lawn is quite easy once you know the bare basics.

  • The secret to maintain a beautiful lawn is proper watering. Hose down the lawns regularly without fail, as lawns will need at least an inch of water every week. The condition of the soil can indicate whether the lawn needs watering or not, as dry soil is often a dead giveaway. Observing the lawns on an everyday basis before or after returning from work will help in the long run- you’ll notice if the plants are responding favourably to the conditions they are in and can discuss the same with the gardening staff.
  • Keep an eye out for weeds and remove them constantly. Using weed control tools and fertilizers and other chemicals in this case can also help. Your actions should be approved by other members while using chemicals, though. This is something best done through the association of the gated community.
  • Take some time off to partner with a few neighbours to maintain or develop your garden. Gardening is a great stress buster and residents can pool together to monitor and innovate the gardens and lawns to ensure that the greens are good to go.


Fair Acres Country homes in Karen 

Swimming Pools

There’s nothing quite like taking a dip in the pool during a sunny summer day, but keep in mind the fact that the pool is a public space that needs to be properly maintained in order to avoid infections and fungi.

  • Follow up with the pool staff to see how often the pool is being cleaned and chlorinated or filtered. This helps in two ways, one, you know when the pool was last cleaned and whether it makes sense to jump in, and two, everybody is aware of the maintenance of the pool and that the maintenance staff are doing their job accountably. Getting the association to put up a “Cleaning Schedule” in the vicinity of the swimming pool goes a long way in achieving this.
  • Make sure that other users and residents of the swimming pool adhere to the rules of the amenity. If you see people jumping in with improper swimwear, notify the lifeguard or the staff and ensure they take action. The same goes with hygiene in the pool, usage of head and shower caps etc.
  • There will be some corners that these chemicals will not reach, and these regions should be scrubbed with cleaning brushes, considering they accumulate dirt and grime. While you’re in the pool it’s important to notice if these “dark areas” are existent and whether they have been cleaned effectively. You can then take the same up with the maintenance staff and ensure it’s been done.
  • Try and get your association to put up a complaint board in the swimming pool premises. This ensures that people can make public complaints, of course, with their identity and information of who they are, where they live, what the problem was, when it was reported etc, so the management can follow up with staff to ensure the problem is validated and fixed immediately. The solution and the response from the maintenance staff can also be put up in plain sight on the same board so residents know that the staff are addressing key issues and working to come up with solutions.


These basic tips, when followed properly, will help you enjoy an active and healthy social life with the other members in your apartment, without any worries or issues! A gated community is like a big house. It involves commitment and social responsibility to maintain what is beautiful and good for all. The best gated communities in the world are built not only by brick and stone, but by active and participating residents and innovative public governance and responsibility.


Source: Upkeep of Common Areas in a Gated Community – Lawns, Gyms and Swimming Pools. Link:

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