If played right, it's possible to break (or even cheat) the System with alternative communities like those you are referring too. Common elements (kitchen, entertainment, etc) and a collectivized budget for consumables, maintenance, and renovations would cut down on the costs of living by a large percent.

It's just an alien concept to many folks (even though this arrangement was the norm in past centuries.)

To someone like myself, the decision-making process in a community like this seems to be fraught with heated arguments and grudges. Who does the dishes? Maintains the lawn? How do you discipline those who actively avoid pulling their own weight?