The article below is an excerpt from 50 Things to Think About Before Buying a Home in The Villages by The Villages resident Parker Sykes.
This consideration is often forgotten until it’s too late — be alert!
I guess everyone thinks about this issue a bit, but possibly not enough.
Don’t get caught neglecting this potential impact on home enjoyment and then either have to live with the consequences for years to come.
Everyone can understand the traffic noise if you decide to buy next to a busy road (don’t forget the substantial traffic pick-up during the peak winter months).
Some roadways are busier than others. The multi-modal paths are major golf cart arteries. County roads carry truck traffic in addition to cars. Now, some allowances can be made for the construction traffic during new neighborhood construction, as most of this should go away or move to a maintenance-only mode in the future.
If you buy a home with a neighbor backing directly up to you you may have considered the potential noise and privacy consequences of this arrangement.
Some neighbors are better (never go outside, are respectful of others, don’t play the TV or stereo loud, etc) or worse (the other extreme, i.e. neighbors from H…!) than others.
One thing you can’t absolutely be sure of is what type of neighbor you’ll have, not just now, but when/if the neighbor’s home changes hands over time.
What are other sources of noise? Are you familiar with the railroad noises that pervade the west side of The Villages? The north-south route paralleling highway 301 is a major Florida rail freight route.
Some people say this noise doesn’t bother them, and of course it is sporadic.
Be aware that depending on the prevailing winds on any given day you may notice this noise to a greater or lesser extent.
A possibly more significant noise issue has to do with the pickleball courts adjacent to the rec centers. The pinging noises can start very early in the morning and continue all day. Don’t assume that you will always be able to stay inside and avoid these and other noises.
Our homes aren’t perfect in terms of blocking all exterior sounds, especially through the windows.
I bet you never considered music to be a detractor?
In The Villages we love our music.
It’s even better if we can enjoy it while sitting outside enjoying a beverage or a meal.
Besides the potential of a neighbor playing their music too loud, don’t forget about the music originating from the Town Squares or the occasional Country Club outside event (luckily most Country Clubs are respectful and understand the negative impact of loud music on their residential neighbors and don’t allow, or at least severely restrict outside music).
If you decide to purchase close to The Polo field don’t forget the impact of the PA system sound carry.
Noise can also originate from nearby commercial establishments. It might be traffic noise or even the HVAC equipment on the rooftop or adjacent to a building.
Besides the noise factor associated with commercial developments, don’t forget that some commercial structures higher than a single story may impact some views.
This is especially troubling when residential areas are developed before the commercial ones are completed; and the actual commercial development is different than what was envisioned by the homeowners.
Here’s an aspect that many people completely miss.
Light “pollution” can come from a street light or neighboring structure, but also can occur from car and golf cart headlights, depending on the street arrangement and home living space orientation.
The worst situations can occur at busy intersections with evening traffic making frequent turns.
As vehicles turn, the headlights “sweep” the houses in their path. If you intend minimal window treatment this could lead to a distraction after purchase.
What’s That Smell?
Odors can be a problem if you purchase downwind from one of the sewage treatment facilities interior to The Villages.
This isn’t always a problem in that they do a generally good job of managing this issue, but it is something to consider.
Also, the many retention ponds around The Villages have greater or lesser amounts of circulation (most are interconnected with others in ways that allow for level control and optimum irrigation storage).
When a pond is fairly stagnant, and plant/bacteria life gets a bit out of control, odors can be a problem.
Be aware that sales agents aren’t always well versed on these types of issues, and aren’t necessarily required to disclose a range of negatives when showing you lots/homes.
Remember, they act as seller’s agents, not buyer’s agents, so do your own due diligence before you purchase.