Saturday, July 28, 2007

Yard Sales & Gated Developments

Some of yesterdays comments reminded me of bargain hunting.......which then reminded me of another reason I don't like gated developments.

Side note: I am really struggling to figure out why people like gated developments, because they are very popular. When we visited Lennar last week over at Blackstone the sales guy looked at me like I was crazy not to like them. BTW - I am now refusing to call them gated communities, for the reason why....see this post.

Back to bargain hunting. It is that time of year when all the yard/garage sales start occurring. Round here in Serrano, I never see them. I am sure they are against the rules, and even if they weren't, the gated thing really makes it logistically difficult.

We used to hit yard sales all the time back East looking for stuff for our two young kids. They were a great way to get toys and baby gear on the cheap. Some really good bargains could be found, especially in the the nicer neighborhoods (almost none of which were gated). It was also a great way to meet neighbors.


Patient Renter said...

Yea, I think yard sales are definately a mortal sin in Serrano. I know that in another gated community, Bridlewood, they do an annual community yard sale day - the one day a year that yard sales are allowed and everyone does it together. It's a nice compromise.

Cmyst said...

In general, I think gated communities are silly and pretentious. Especially Serrano, which is a gated community in a very low crime rate town, pretty far off the beaten path.
However, given the number of empty houses in even these upscale developments, now might be a really good time for guards and a gate.

Gwynster said...

The few yard sales I've run across were run by "professional collectors" and they wanted antique boutique prices.

I love ebay and Craiglist. It's where I dump my old stuff now. I think these two services have more to do with the disappearance of yard sales then gated communities.

I agree with Cmyst. Whenever I hear someone say they live in a gated community, I just roll my eyes.

Giacomo said...

We're renting in a gated community in a rural area. I don't know where we'll end up buying, but the effects of this community's restrictions are not displeasing: it's a good deal tidier and ordered than the "free" area outside the gates, where junkyard neighbors and druggie/biker/welfare-cheat households are fairly common.
I don't think there's necessarily anything "silly and pretentious" about gated communities, they're just an added layer of social contract. I see no reason to pre-judge them as a group, that's just lazy thinking.

"Pretentious" might be a term I'd use for the naming of modern American housing developments with venerable Italian place-names..but I know that's probably that's just a personal reaction!

Gwynster said...


I have to agree about all the fako tuscan and french names too.

I grew up in OC & LA, then went to school in SF. I've seen real gated communities. What I loved about Sacramento was it's small town agricultural feel, the old homes, and how the different social classes got along. It reminded me of OC when I was very very young.

Lately, Sacramento is reminding of all the reasons I hate OC. This makes me very sad.

buying time said...

I make jokes that I live in the Orange County of the North. Was never too keen on OC....

We visited Bridlewood this weekend. Really nice looking area (still too expensive). But again, a gated development.

I am having trouble figuring out if they are nice because they are gated, or gated because they are nice? As a contrast, Empire Ranch appeals to me since its in Folsom and not gated, but still nice.

Patient Renter said...

"We visited Bridlewood this weekend. Really nice looking area (still too expensive)."

It will definately fall (more)... the gate at the entrance won't prevent that. Around the time that the last homes were selling there (well before the bubble), prices were still a little over 200k for one of the "larger" homes. So, there's plenty of potential downside there. Just for comparison, a basic 3-2 at the next neighborhood over (Hills of El Dorado?) sold for 130k'ish before the bubble. Again, plenty of potential downside to anything that isn't brand new.

buying time said...

PR -

Thanks for the scoop on Bridlewood!