Is joining a country club worth it?

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  • KMeloneyKMeloney Members Posts: 4,838 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    596 wrote:


    there's no way I could join a club. I like playing as many as 4-5 courses on a regular basis... ...If I joined a club I'd feel as though I had to get my monies worth and play that course all the time. That sounds very boring to me.



    Can't join a club!!




    You're entitled to use whatever justification you like, but it sounds like you haven't considered the idea that being a member of a club allows you to reciprocate with friends who belong to other clubs. I've got a number of friends who belong to different clubs, and we play at each other's courses often. Most of the time no money for the rounds changes hands because the guest will host at his club soon. So, you can still play other courses often, yet still have ownership in a place where you can call your home (and get your money's worth). Just a positive spin on your reasoning...
  • Xpicc19Xpicc19 Members Posts: 559
    for me it is definitely worth it. my club has a range and a practice facility. this has improved my game tremendously by allowing me to practice whenever i want for how long i want for free. definitely worth it. if the club does not have or include at least a range, then it would be not so much worth it for me!
  • wingedfoot97wingedfoot97 Members Posts: 868 ✭✭
    edited Aug 18, 2011 #34
    glcoach wrote:


    To be honest....well, you don't sound much different from Judge Smails yourself...just a younger, singler version. However, to each their own. Just remember those "horrifying juniors" are the future of the game and EVERY course has retired persons that play on Monday and Wednesdays.






    Not even close to a Judge Smails. I don't cheat, don't own a yacht, and I'm not a Judge. "Horrifying juniors" or whatever you call them need a little discipline but that is another thread. If those horrifying juniors are in fact the future of the game, like society, it doesnt look good.



    You sir get a +1 for being the first to reply with a pithy response! Congrats!!
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  • wingedfoot97wingedfoot97 Members Posts: 868 ✭✭
    Oaks wrote:


    To me joining a club allows you the flexibility with your game. You can play 18 after work, or heck you can play 3 holes after work and hit some balls at the range.



    To me it is the convenience and having a track that I love to play every day.






    Very well put. Some places you can even go out on the course and practice providing it's after hours.
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  • scotchbladescotchblade Members Posts: 2,385
    At the private club where I work, there a sense of community and pride. "House Rules" are part of it too. For example, appropriate dress is required and cell phone use is restricted to certain areas. If that is important to you, that can be a big deal.
  • wingedfoot97wingedfoot97 Members Posts: 868 ✭✭
    invulse wrote:






    I have always wondered how the people of a club would treat someone like myself who would be a really young member who is not affiliated with any current or previous member. It's safe to say that most people my age simply cannot afford something like this unless they come from money (which I do not), so I wonder whether or not the existing members would treat me with the same respect they treat each other, or would I be looked down upon since I am young and completely new.




    Hopefully your club treats you with respect. I think I got a little better treatment because I could play with some of the better members. I too wasnt affiliated with any current or previous members as my parents couldnt afford to join. Most will realize that by joining that young you are joing for the golf and to work on your game and are serious.



    The poster above is right about the food and beverage minimums. I forgot to put that I wasnt told about that until my first bill. The minimums were not that large but were something that tended to get raised along with the dues and helped lead me to depart from that club.
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  • jas904jas904 Members Posts: 1,399 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    There is a huge difference between public golf and private golf. At a private club customer service is a big deal which is nice. Things like pace of play, dress code, and course condition are held to a premium. I can't stand showing up to a public course and seeing cargo shorts wearing non-divot filling weekend warriors. It's nice to go to a club where everyone knows your name. As far as playing the same course goes, I happen to love the layout and haven't got bored with it yet. I would highly recommend going ahead with it.
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  • Nature BoyNature Boy Members Posts: 170
    The reason why I joined my club is because of the gangs. Every Saturday and Sunday there are two 14 handicap minimum gangs that play from the back tees, $20 and $40 entry respectively and the format is two ball gross. Usually there is about 20-30 in these groups and most are good players. On Wednesdays and Fridays they have a gang where people can play from all different tees, two ball gross and these gangs usually attract 50-60 people. Great time, great camaraderie, and this club is known for some of the best players in the state of Maryland. They consistently are a factor in the state team matches. This club is not as upscale as other clubs but I enjoy just about every member and there is always someone to play with. Joining this club was the best thing that ever happened to my game, when I joined I was around a 14, now I am playing to a 7.
  • DonlyDonly Members Posts: 301
    Oaks wrote:


    To me joining a club allows you the flexibility with your game. You can play 18 after work, or heck you can play 3 holes after work and hit some balls at the range.



    To me it is the convenience and having a track that I love to play every day.




    +1



    Exactly why i joined our local country club. Last year i had joined a public course and was not happy because of the traffic.
  • Xpicc19Xpicc19 Members Posts: 559
    Oaks wrote:


    To me joining a club allows you the flexibility with your game. You can play 18 after work, or heck you can play 3 holes after work and hit some balls at the range.



    To me it is the convenience and having a track that I love to play every day.




    i absolutely agree. i can play any time i want and the freedom that i have there is priceless. +1
  • invulseinvulse Members Posts: 15
    Xpicc19 wrote:

    Oaks wrote:


    To me joining a club allows you the flexibility with your game. You can play 18 after work, or heck you can play 3 holes after work and hit some balls at the range.



    To me it is the convenience and having a track that I love to play every day.




    i absolutely agree. i can play any time i want and the freedom that i have there is priceless. +1




    I agree, it could be amazing to get off work at 4 or 5, jump on to the course and play 9 holes in an hour and a half without feeling like I wasted money by not playing 18. I even found a nice country club in the area with $500 initiation and $275 a month, no food minimums or other hidden costs (aside from the standard cart fees). They even offered to have me come play a free round on them this saturday with a couple of members.
  • Biskit72Biskit72 Members Posts: 69
    i just joined a private club a couple months ago and its the best golf decision ive made. in our club we have reciprocals with other 7 other private clubs in the area where we can play their course for cart fee only. That is something you might want to check on.
  • PinhyPinhy Members Posts: 259
    Pinhy wrote:


    My friends and I used to love playing a different course every time we got together to play. I've always thought "it would be so nice to be a member at a club, but I could never afford it". Then the country club 1.5 miles down the road from my house had a special with no initial fee and an unlimited plan I couldnt pass on. So 2 of us jumped on it.



    Ive been there a year and a half now and still love it. I thought I would get bored of playing the same course, but I really dont. The other side of the coin is, you get to really know the course, try different approaches on different rounds, practice that one hole that really doesnt "fit your eye" and just feel like it is "your" course. I join my friends once in a while when they want to play other courses, and my friends come play at my course too. Plus I've made SOOO many more golfing buddies, and there are regular groups on Saturday and Sunday mornings, plus weekday groups too. Friendly 9-hole evening scrambles once a week, and all sorts of social games throughout the year. I can go after work and play 9 or 18 or 6 or 14 holes and not feel like I paid for a full round and need to get my moneys worth. And finally, it is never over-crowded and way behind on tee times, and i can pretty much walk on and find an opening or a group to play with any time.



    As others have mentioned, feeling like part of a club is something you also factor into the cost. Along with good, cheap food and drink, and the same "grown up" people to associate with. Plus, the members treat the course and facilities well since it is "their" course.



    Well worth my money in my opinion, you wont be disappointed.








    Thought I would add my experience tonight, since it is something I do quite often, and usually dont even think about it being special, but it really is:



    I went straight to the club after work. It had been raining off and on in the afternoon, but stopped a little before 5. I got there about 520 and the lounge was pretty empty. Ordered a drink at the bar, and the bartender told me some of the guys i usually hang out with had just gone out when the rain stopped. So i jumped in a cart, headed out toward the 3rd tee, found them on the 3rd fairway and teed off with them on 4.



    Beautiful !





  • semipopularsemipopular Members Posts: 211 ✭✭
    Thats a good deal with the Jr membership. I like being a part of a club, it adds another cool aspect to golf. Talking smack with the guys and not worrying about those hacks that make 5 1/2 hour rounds. Go for it!
  • NolesNoles Members Posts: 1,457 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    edited Aug 20, 2011 #46
    I joined a club just over 2 years ago and it was the best thing I ever did. Aside from being able to get out very easily and meeting new people, it has been great for my family. The pool is 1000x better than our local township pool and my son has great access. I can play with him almost any time and he loves to spend time at the practice facility. He is the only kid his age that plays a lot (he is 7) so he is like a celebrity there.
  • KMDKMD Members Posts: 562
    As some have posted above, the benefit to me is the ability to go out any afternoon, hit some balls, and be the only person on the course if I want to play a few holes (I don't seem to accomplish much on the range). Also, the priceless point to me is that I can bring my 3 year old son out on Sunday afternoons and let him actually play - no way to do that on a public course.
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  • invulseinvulse Members Posts: 15
    Just played 2 of the local country clubs in my area this last weekend. The first of which is owned by American Golf and it was less country club-ish than the other, and was pretty busy for a private club. The second club I played was great though. Went out in what they told me was their absolute busiest time of the week (Sunday morning) and is the only part of the week that they accept tee times. Even during the busiest time of the week, I was able to play with 2 others and finish in under 4 hours. I have to say being able to play in the morning on a weekend at a quick pace is something I haven't done in years and is almost worth it on its own, but their fantastic practice area really sold me on it. The driving range was in great shape, with no mats, all grass. The chipping and putting greens were in perfect condition and the course was tough but fair. Hopefully I will be joining in the next month, but I can say it seems completely worth the money!
  • indybirdieindybirdie Members Posts: 205 ✭✭
    I was in your situation and decided to join, mainly for the following:



    1) I love the course. Every time I went out with my buddies to another course, I just thought how I wish I was spending my 4 hours playing at the course I am now a member of. I used to be one who would play at a variety of course and can tell you I don't miss playing at any of those one bit. If you don't love the course, don't sign up for it no matter how great the deal sounds.



    2) It was good timing financially. I agree with most of the other posters here - if you try to cost justify it by dividing price by rounds, you will never get there. What did sell it for me was I could get in now under the junior rate and my kids could also start playing on the course and using the driving range (my wife doesn't play, but if yours does even better for you). There is also a great pool and workout facility at the club. I also think due to the low entry, if I tried it for a year and didn't like it I could simply stop my membership and not be out of pocket too much.



    3) The membership was a good fit. While you won't get along with everyone, it is important to make sure the vibe of the club is something that suits you. Make sure it is not too stuffy or too lax where it doesn't even feel like a country club. It is best to join with a group of friends (they will sometimes give a group discount) or at least ask if you can be a 'preview' member for a few months to get to know some people.



    Anyway, best of luck to you.
  • SimpSimp Members Posts: 2,909 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    And now that school is in (here anyway) the club was a ghost town this morning. Last week the range had 20 people @ 9am. Today: 3.
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  • Fourmyle of CeresFourmyle of Ceres Unregistered Posts: 7,829 ✭✭
    Simp,



    That doesn't work as well at our club where the average age of the membership is somewhere in their mid-50's (being generous). About the only thing that clears them out is football season.
  • SimpSimp Members Posts: 2,909 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭


    Simp,



    That doesn't work as well at our club where the average age of the membership is somewhere in their mid-50's (being generous). About the only thing that clears them out is football season.




    Gotta love football season! Nice fall day with an empty course? What's not to love? LOL.
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  • Bigrome26Bigrome26 Members Posts: 167
    I have been debating as well about joining the country club a few minutes from my house, so I went and inquired about a possible membership yesterday. The place seems really great and the social aspect of it seems good. Personally, I am not interested in the social gatherings or anything of that sort. I really only want to be able to golf any time I feel like doing so. Their practice facility is top notch and I would be able to use it at my leisure without any other fees. I certainly have no issues playing the same course on a regular basis and the fact that this place has 36 holes of golf would really widen my options. My deal with this choice is simply the financial aspect of it. I could care less about the dining, pool use, tennis courts, etc. I really only want to play golf and everything else doesn't matter, so I can't bring myself to pay $250 per month for other stuff I have no interest in. But at the same, I play 3-4 times per week (not including the few trips to range) and that is killing my pocketbook. I have a tee time tomorrow at the club to see if this is something I am willing to pull the trigger on.
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  • backteesbacktees Members Posts: 866
    I have 3 different courses / country clubs within 15 minutes reach and I was thinking hard about joining one of them.



    I did not and I maybe won't neither in the future because of 3 reason:



    1. It is expensive. $30'000 to $50'000 entrance fee plus $2'000 anual fee is a lot of money as such.

    But what are the costs of opportunity? What else can I do with that amount of money? If I calculate only in terms of golfi

    I can play most of the best courses around the world, where ever they are, and combine it with a great vacations with my wife.



    2. I do not want to play the same course day in day out. That bores me. I am looking for the variety, play here, play there and

    discover those many great course near and far.



    3. My best buddies wouldn't not join one of those country clubs because of different reasons. And as those buddies are really

    close friends I would play different courses with them anyway.



    So, i keep the money, fly to Scottland, Arizona, California, Dubai, China and Japan and play some of the great courses there,

    discover a new culture and have a personal enrichment.



    I understand that joining a country club is great, too. But as long as it is that expensive i rather "invest" that money differently.
  • cristphotocristphoto Members Posts: 3,394 ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
    I was a member at a private club for over 15 years until it shut down for a real estate deal. Joining a club was the best move I ever made. We had 36 holes and the kids loved the swimming and tennis. As others have stated service was exceptional and we knew what to expect and what was expected of us. I would often take business clients to play and this also had benefits. I was on the golf team and the greatest benefit was having the ability to go play at other private clubs I wouldn't otherwise have had the ability to play.
  • jim rockfordjim rockford Members Posts: 631 ✭✭
    goodthread...although quasi-grunching....



    i agree o thevariety being a huge benefit on non-membership...



    afew things toco sider onCClub. less crowded club is much muchbetter. access to top notch practicefacilities and unlimited balls with grass tees.immersing yourself in golf culture....



    sorry typing fromipad.... just don'tjoin very crowded cclub
  • Forged4everForged4ever To See A Man’s True Character, Spend 4+ Hours With Him on a Golf Course⛳️ The Burgh/Hdcp: My gene poolClubWRX Posts: 15,738 ClubWRX
    The one thing that I have not seen mentioned in any of the posts in this page are the social/professional aspects of joining a private club. Regarding golf, there's no one here, and you're just gonna have to trust me on this this, lol, who loves the game more than I.



    In '12, my last year playing, I played 5-6 rounds/week, 4 of them competitive(swats/scrambles) along with USGA and regional tournaments.



    My point-



    I love the game and play a tremendous amount of golf when healthy.



    As has been mentioned above, membership in one club in no way precludes one from playing other club tracks, because all that you have to do is invite a friend/acquaintance from another club to your club, and you have basically gained at least a round at his club, lol. Also, many clubs, mine included, have a "traveling swat," where you rotate weekly between four or five clubs with about 25-35 guys playing. I don't know if the word "swat" is a Pgh/W Pa thing, though it's similar to a scramble, though we play scratch(no hdcp), our own ball and then have a partner so you play your ball for score along with a partner for a best ball score.



    However, having been a member at this club since I was 14yo and obviously a "Junior" member under my parent's membership, then as an "Intermediate(non-voting)" member, from 26-36yo, and then as a voting/full member there after.



    And while our course is a beautiful old "Eastern" design track, last co-hosting the '03 US Am with Oakmont, the best part of the membership, for me, has been the amazing men that I have met, starting when I was young and moving right through to today.



    A few became mentors to me, and many became friends. These are men across the full professional spectrum, from Fortune 20 corporate CEOs to physicians, lawyers and small business owners, along with coaches and ownership/senior mgt from our professional sports teams to the upper level employees in these companies. While there are rules and restrictions regarding conducting any business within the confines of the club, due to the exclusionary and non-profit status of the club, the relationships formed, nurtured & forged(no pun intended) are, at least to me, worth much more than the golf.



    You can find excellent golf courses all across this region.



    The people, both members and guests that I have been lucky enough to play with and get to know?



    You can't put a price on those.



    So, my only comment would be, if you have to do a cost/benefit analysis as to whether you should join, or the thoughts about playing one course versus multiple muni tracks is even in your thought process, then the club's not for you.



    And this isn't a good/bad thing.



    Obviously, you have to be able to pay the initiation fee, chits and monthly dues.



    I'm talking about asking yourself if you're going to get "your money's worth"



    If you have to ask, you won't, lol



    Just one man's opinion image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />



    The Best to Ya regardless of your decision



    In The Name Of The Game,



    My Best,

    Richard
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  • Bigrome26Bigrome26 Members Posts: 167
    edited Mar 2, 2014 #58


    The one thing that I have not seen mentioned in any of the posts in this page are the social/professional aspects of joining a private club. Regarding golf, there's no one here, and you're just gonna have to trust me on this this, lol, who loves the game more than I.



    In '12, my last year playing, I played 5-6 rounds/week, 4 of them competitive(swats/scrambles) along with USGA and regional tournaments.



    My point-



    I love the game and play a tremendous amount of golf when healthy.



    As has been mentioned above, membership in one club in no way precludes one from playing other club tracks, because all that you have to do is invite a friend/acquaintance from another club to your club, and you have basically gained at least a round at his club, lol. Also, many clubs, mine included, have a "traveling swat," where you rotate weekly between four or five clubs with about 25-35 guys playing. I don't know if the word "swat" is a Pgh/W Pa thing, though it's similar to a scramble, though we play scratch(no hdcp), our own ball and then have a partner so you play your ball for score along with a partner for a best ball score.



    However, having been a member at this club since I was 14yo and obviously a "Junior" member under my parent's membership, then as an "Intermediate(non-voting)" member, from 26-36yo, and then as a voting/full member there after.



    And while our course is a beautiful old "Eastern" design track, last co-hosting the '03 US Am with Oakmont, the best part of the membership, for me, has been the amazing men that I have met, starting when I was young and moving right through to today.



    A few became mentors to me, and many became friends. These are men across the full professional spectrum, from Fortune 20 corporate CEOs to physicians, lawyers and small business owners, along with coaches and ownership/senior mgt from our professional sports teams to the upper level employees in these companies. While there are rules and restrictions regarding conducting any business within the confines of the club, due to the exclusionary and non-profit status of the club, the relationships formed, nurtured &amp; forged(no pun intended) are, at least to me, worth much more than the golf.



    You can find excellent golf courses all across this region.



    The people, both members and guests that I have been lucky enough to play with and get to know?



    You can't put a price on those.



    So, my only comment would be, if you have to do a cost/benefit analysis as to whether you should join, or the thoughts about playing one course versus multiple muni tracks is even in your thought process, then the club's not for you.



    And this isn't a good/bad thing.



    Obviously, you have to be able to pay the initiation fee, chits and monthly dues.



    I'm talking about asking yourself if you're going to get "your money's worth"



    If you have to ask, you won't, lol



    Just one man's opinion image/smile.png' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':)' />



    The Best to Ya regardless of your decision



    In The Name Of The Game,



    My Best,

    Richard




    Well said!

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  • jyamatjyamat Members Posts: 231 ✭✭✭
    My parents joined a country club when I was 11 YO (I am currently 37) and still are members. My father plays 5 times a week during the season and in the off-season plays cards on Men's night with the boys. Three years ago, my wife and I decided to join this same country club as I have 4 sons ranging in from 9-3 YO. I will offer my two reasons why I joined (amongst the many others)

    1) Family- Cant tell you how nice it is to have a club in which the whole family can spend most of the week during the hot summer days swimming...also the Junior Golf Program is great.



    2) Business- I am banker so I use my club heavily to forge business relationships. Golf is a great connector when establishing business relationships because you and the client spend at least 5 hours with each other talking about everything but business...



    While money is a big factor on why or why not to join, there are so many other factors. If you decide to join....enjoy it and don't look back.
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  • blairdblaird Members Posts: 2,166 ✭✭✭✭✭✭
    I am a member at a course here. To me it is worth it. I just want to play golf and can do that here. We have a group that once a month we go somewhere about and hour away and play. Plus I play so much tournament golf I get to play other courses.



    I sat down and looked at how many rounds I play and how much I pay a year. It came out to about $9 a round for me. My course requires that you buy a share of stock to own a cart. If you dont and have to rent its $14 every time you play. My dad bought my stock when I graduated college. So that helps.



    It is worth it in my opinion if you can play a bunch. My job allows me to be at the course by 330 any day of the week. Plus I have summers off so I play everyday then as well.



    The social aspect is great too. There are probably 10+ games with our members out here. I normally play in 2 or 3 of them so there is always someone to play with and usually a game to get in. I live two minutes from the clubhouse as do quite a few friends so during football season we are there cooking out watching games.
  • Fourmyle of CeresFourmyle of Ceres Unregistered Posts: 7,829 ✭✭
    With due respect to the myriad reasons people join country clubs, for me it's an extremely simple proposition.



    Belonging to my club costs me more than it would cost to play public daily-fee courses or be a member elsewhere. But being a member means playing 100+ times a year on my favorite course within a 50-mile radius of my home and office. So I don't need any other justification, at least as long as I can afford the dues. Which is good because I'm not really a social member and don't need any business contact networking.



    P.S. In honesty there is one course about 40 miles away which I like almost as well as my club's course but I still like our course better plus the distance is much more manageable.

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