What’s life like for pilots living in hangar homes in an airpark?
Have you ever dreamed of living in a community of pilots? Well, that dream is an everyday reality for anyone living in one of the growing number of hangar homes. Hangar homes are built with an aircraft hangar adjacent or beneath the main living area. The hangars are linked by taxiways to a nearby airfield and these taxiways also enable vehicular access to the airfield perimeter and out into the wider world. While some hangar homes are one-off dwellings, communities of hangar homes, sometimes called airparks, are the perfect place for pilots to call home.
The Airpark Lifestyle
An airpark is a residential community whose residents live next to an airstrip and use aircraft as part of their daily life. People who live in these kind of communities are recreational pilots or aviation professionals who require access to the runway for practical reasons on a regular basis.
These types of communities often feature a hangar alongside each house, allowing residents to store their aircraft on their own property, never far from their beloved aeroplanes. Airpark living is ideal for tech-savvy pilots looking to stay connected to their love of flying while still enjoying all the amenities and conveniences that come with the traditional rural or suburban lifestyle.
Pilots, both recreational and commercial, live in these aviation communities all over the world. With a home and a hangar, airfield-grade security, and often various amenities within the complex, these homes are among some of the most desirable for aircraft owners looking for a place of residence befitting their passion for flying.
Living in a Hangar Home
Living in a hangar home is incomparable to any other kind of habituation. They are designed to combine the best of two worlds. On the one hand, you have the open space and close to the earth living of a rural area, and on the other the reassuring sound of an aero engine as a fellow resident taxis in from a flight or out to line up and depart on the nearby runway.
Naturally, designs vary from location to location. Some have a more rural setting than others and are adjacent to comparatively quiet grass strips, while others are more urban, both in the design of the park itself and in its proximity to a busy regional airport which may see movements of not only light aircraft, but also bizjets, gyrocopters, and helicopters. Vintage aircraft are not as common in such locations, but they may arrive as visitors.
What they all possess, however, whatever the design of the master suite and the rest of the living quarters, is direct access to a runway via taxiways from each hangar adjacent to each home. They are usually also within the perimeter of the airfield boundary. This gives them the feeling of wide open spaces, freedom, and exclusivity.
Pilot Life in a Fly In Community
Moving into a hangar home could revolutionise the way you live. From studios to homes of various square footage, there are options for anything from single occupancy to family sized homes. Within the more modern and recently constructed dwellings, you’ll save on energy bills thanks to new technology and improved insulation. Depending on the location, everything you need could be nearby with easy access to shops, gyms, and restaurants.
There’s also the community aspect to enjoy. An airpark of hangar homes isn’t just another piece of urban sprawl. It’s a community of aviators and their families, so from the moment you arrive you know you’ve got something in common with everyone in the vicinity.
The Airpark Fly In Community Feel
Community living in a collection of hangar homes nestled near an airfield is a special experience. Not only are part of an exclusive set of aviators sharing the same airfield, but there is also a strong sense of camaraderie among these air-minded neighbours.
Instead of traditional front porch chats, there are hangars full of conversation centred around flying, aircraft type, and hands-on maintenance. Whether discussing the latest aviation news or diagnosing mechanical problems with aero engines, it’s easy to feel connected when living amongst like-minded aviators. Overall, living in an airpark encourages deep connections among its residents.
On the other hand, if it’s privacy you want then hangar homes can provide that too. Some are complete one-off builds with no near neighbours. They’ve been designed for those private individuals who want a home that accommodates an aeroplane or helicopter, and such people usually have the means to buy one outright or have one purpose built.
Is There An Airpark Near Me?
There are airparks all over the USA in almost every state. According to Livingwithyourplane.com there are 674 in the USA and more in Canada, Brazil, Australia, Costa Rica, France, Sweden, Germany, Mexico, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
One of the most well-known is the Spruce Creek fly in community at Spruce Creek airport near Port Orange in Florida.
Hicks Airfield in Fort Worth, Texas, is another airfield where a hangar home comes onto the market from time to time.
When lots are put on the market, I would imagine that this type of real estate doesn’t stay on the market for long. In the US in particular, where aviation is looked upon with much more tolerance and acceptance than some other countries, a hangar home is a prime piece of real estate.
Hanging Your Hat in a Hangar Home
If you’re thinking about moving to an airpark or a unique hangar home it’s important to do your research before investing in this type of real estate. As well as the usual checks you need to carry out when looking to move into a new area into a conventional home, there are a few others that are particular to a hangar home in an airpark. Look into what amenities the park has, the airfield opening hours, year-round weather, road links, and access to other facilities in the wider area. Check that the direct access to and from the airfield to your property is present and in a good state of repair.
Enquire about the airfield security and check that the home has access to essential services like supermarkets, public transportation, and doctors offices. On top of all this, consider the cost associated with living in the airpark such as mortgage prices, homeowners insurance, and all related costs involved with moving.
There are many benefits to living in an airpark, from the affordability of hangar homes to the tight-knit community feel. If you’re considering making a move to one, do your research first.
A Hangar Home in the UK
For more information about hangar homes in the UK visit HangarHomes.co.uk. The company has submitted applications for hangar homes at six airfields in the UK.
These plans present an opportunity for airfield and airport operators. Selling the site will be just the beginning of a profitable venture for both airport operators and businesses on the airfield. Not only does each hangar home pay an ongoing monthly charge, but having additional aircraft based at the airfield could generate substantial income from fuel sales and aircraft maintenance services, not to mention increased visibility that would attract more aircraft to the airfield.