How Much Does it Cost to Buy a Golf Course?

Aug 22, 2022

golf course with mountains

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Golf is among the most popular sports in the United States and worldwide. Here in America, about 25 million people play the sport, which has roots in 15th-century Scotland. 

You may be a golfer yourself, but have you ever thought about how much it costs to buy a golf course? Find out how much they can cost you and the affecting factors in this article.

How Much Do Golf Courses Cost?

If you want to buy a golf course in 2022, you’ll have to come up with more than the loose change in your pocket and the bills in your wallet. Here are some of the most popular courses in the United States and their price tag.

PGA National Resort and Spa

In 2018, a Canadian asset management firm bought the resort and its five courses for $218 million. Located in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, the golf resort hosts the Honda Classic for the Professional Golf Association (PGA) each February.

Gold Canyon Golf Resort

The Gold Canyon Golf Resort is about 45 minutes east of Phoenix. This golf resort cost a bit less, but it still cost a pretty penny. In 2020, a buyer from Montana purchased the resort and its two 18-hole courses for about $30 million.

Brick Landing Plantation Golf Club

You can find the Brick Landing Plantation Golf Club in Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina, near the state’s border with South Carolina. An ownership group purchased the property for about $1.2 million in 2020.

What Factors Affect the Cost?

You’ll likely need at least seven figures to buy a golf course, whether you put up the money alone or with an ownership group. The purchase prices for the above golf courses have a wide range because several factors affect the cost, including the following.

Location, Location, Location

Where a property is matters heavily in real estate and is a significant factor in golf courses. The price tag will likely increase if the course is in a coastal state like California, Florida, Hawaii, the Carolinas and others. Both tourists and residents like to be near the beach, which drives demand and prices in local real estate — these courses are bound to be more expensive.

The PGA

The PGA is the most popular professional golf league in the United States, despite competition with LIV Golf for that title. There are 45 PGA events throughout the year, including the four major tournaments. If the PGA plays at your resort, that means more name recognition for the resort and a rise in property value.

The Resort

When you go to a golf course, it’s more than just fairways and birdies. It may be a vacation in itself because of the resort aspect. Providing a nice place to stay makes the course appealing to golfers, significant others and their children. For example, the PGA National Resort and Spa has over 300 hotel rooms and a 40,000-square-foot spa on the property.

Owner Intentions

The owner’s intentions are critical for the value of the golf course itself. Does the owner want to make it public or private? How much does it cost to play at the resort and is there any competition in the area? Does the owner genuinely love the game of golf or do they see a business opportunity? These questions factor into the price of a property and its long-term value.

Are Golf Courses Like Typical Real Estate?

Somewhat, because golf courses are property — they can go up and down in value. One factor negatively affecting the price of golf courses is an oversaturated market. Between 1986 and 2005, the United States built more than 4,000 courses in the two-decade span and there are over 15,000 regulation golf courses in the United States right now. For everyone to make the profit they want would be nearly impossible.

Buying a golf course has similarities to real estate, but some differences exist. They often have low replacement value, which refers to the money needed to rebuild the course. This reason — coupled with the oversaturation of golf courses in the country — can lead to lower property values when an owner tries to sell their course.

Want to Buy a Golf Course? Open Your Wallet

Anybody can buy a golf course, whether you recently started playing golf or just wrapped up a major tournament win. Just make sure you have enough money in the bank or can form an ownership group to make a purchase. The cheapest golf courses in the United States sell in the low seven figures, while others can climb to a price tag of over $200 million.


Author

Jack Shaw is a senior writer at Modded. He has over five years of experience writing in the men's lifestyle niche.