Membership opportunity at my club

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DougE
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Membership opportunity at my club

Post by DougE » Sat Dec 23, 2017 1:22 am

Okay, so I have been a member at Worthington Manor, literally one of the top rated golf courses in the state. It gives me access 7 days a week to all facilities and practice areas with free play, anytime on weekdays and after 12pm on weekends. I get a locker with my name on it, and 10% off in the pro shop. 30-day advance tee times and some other bells and whistles too. There are no food minimums in the restaurant. I pay $3100 per year for my golf membership. On top of that I have to pay 14 bucks for a cart for 18 holes. This year I spent over $1700 on cart fees, though I did not pay for a cart when I walked or many days where my buddies at the front desk would just tell me to take a cart and not charge me, or charge me a $7 9-hole cart fee even though they knew I was playing 18. It probably would have been at least a couple hundred bucks more.

Well, an opportunity has come up of which I am still trying to find a down-side. I was offered a 5-year unlimited, all-inclusive membership. 7 days, anytime of day, 365 days a year for one, upfront fee of $7500. That's WITH carts included! And I'm not sure, but I think it may also include 12 free guest passes per year. Considering I played WM at least 170 days this year, a place where weekend mornings are $90 to play, and midweek is $80, I don't know if I can afford NOT to take this deal. The way I see it, I was averaging about $400 a month between membership fees and golf carts. This deal would make my out of pocket each month about $125 and I get to play early weekend mornings if I want, plus I may even get those 12 golf passes for guests every year. That's worth another (up to) $1000 a year if I can get that in the deal. (This is called a "Platinum Plus" membership. The simple "Platinum" membership clearly states 12 free guest passes a year, so I'm hoping it's included in the Plus membership too. Still have to get this clarified.)

So, doing the math, I can continue with my existing membership at $3100 a year plus cart fees and no weekend mornings, which will total somewhere around $4800 a year with carts, or I can pay $7500 up front and then no other dues or charges for 5 years, with carts and weekend mornings included, which averages out to $1500 a year. Duh! This membership is limited to only the first 20 who sign up for it and is only being offered through the end of 2017, with a beginning date of January 1, 2018. It ends on December 31, 2022. Continuing with the membership I have now at the rate I play now, it would cost me somewhere around $25,000, assuming cart fees will likely go up over that time period, God only knows how much.

I figure even if I get hit by a bus, assuming it doesn't happen until the middle of the 2nd year, I would still break even at the rate I play. I think it's worth the risk. Unfortunately, I don't have an extra $7500 sitting around like I might have had a few years ago....when I had a somewhat successful small marine business/job. But this offer might just be worth getting a low-interest loan so I can take advantage of it. What do you think?

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jev
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by jev » Sat Dec 23, 2017 6:23 am

If you can pony up the 7.5k upfront somehow it sounds like a nobrainer to me. OTOH, taking a loan paying for a golf membership is not something I would do, ever.
90% of the game is mental, the other half is all in your head (Yogi)

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MattF
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by MattF » Sat Dec 23, 2017 7:55 am

I'm with Jev on this one Doug. It sounds like a fantastic deal but taking out a loan for it would be a deal breaker for me.
Throw me another ball will ya!

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DougE
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by DougE » Sat Dec 23, 2017 9:09 am

MattF wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 7:55 am
I'm with Jev on this one Doug. It sounds like a fantastic deal but taking out a loan for it would be a deal breaker for me.
Yes, however, I already pay for my membership now with a credit card in order to spread out the payments over 12 months rather than pay one lump sum. It comes out to about 258 bucks a month. I then charge my cart fees on top of that. So it is costing me 400-500 bucks a month, depending on how many carts I use for the month. Paying a small loan back, with MUCH lower interest than a credit card (like 3 or 4%), at a payment of maybe $130-135 a month is no different in my opinion, and a much more comfortable option. In fact, before I sign, I plan to try and negotiate a transfer clause where the membership can be transferred one time only, to someone else, in the event that I DO get hit by a bus, or have a major life change of some sort.

I have taken small loans out from time to time to do a home remodeling job, or to buy a piece of necessary equipment for my company, rather than spend money sitting in my bank account, just in case I need to use it for something MORE important. So, I have no issue buying something and paying for it over time at a much lower interest rate than I can get on a credit card, while keeping my own cash in the bank safe and sound.

I can't stand Trump, but wasn't it he who said to never use your own money to get what you want? And look where HE is now! :facepalm

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jev
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by jev » Sat Dec 23, 2017 10:01 am

Paying through CC, yeah, that's something I wouldn't do either - but I guess that's the difference between the US way of living vs. the European.
DougE wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 9:09 am
And look where HE is now!
N=1 ;-).
How many Americans got into trouble for loans they couldn't pay back? And where are they now?

Taking out a loan for something like a house or business materials is something quite different than for non-essentials IMHO.

It all sounds pretty expensive anyway. Just to compare: I pay €1275/year on my homecourse (27 holes + 9 holes PAR3). No time restrictions, no added fees for use of facilities (including balls on the DR) except for the use of a locker (€70/year or so). No cartfees either since I never use a cart (not really necessary, pretty uncommon anyway to use one here for people without major disabilities).
90% of the game is mental, the other half is all in your head (Yogi)

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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by legitimatebeef » Sat Dec 23, 2017 10:41 am

Are you people even considering the numbers? Douge is not some dead beat trying to live beyond means. On the contrary he is trying to take advantage of an opportunity that will SAVE considerable money AND increase value. :fkno Like Doug explained, this is not exactly some high risk venture. As long as he remains breathing and upright, he will be taking advantage. Did you forget who we are talking about? The man plays many rounds hell or high water. Don't listen to these people Doug. They just want to keep you down in the gutter. This is a windfall as far as I can tell.
vamos a jugar por la playa

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sjduffers
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by sjduffers » Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:20 pm

I would do it, but I doubt that they will let you transfer the membership (even once): that's the gamble.

I think that part of the risk they are taking is that they expect that you won't play for all 5 years (or at least not 170 rounds every year for 5 years), so they won't have the cart expense, etc... but they will have your cash upfront, which they'll place at 7-8%, or buy something for the course, such as equipment (something which price inflates at that kind of rate), or make a buy vs lease decision saving the lease fees, and will have nearly half as much again after 5 years, i.e. around $11k.
I'm gonna go low this time...

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jasonfish11
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by jasonfish11 » Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:27 pm

It seems like a good idea for you.
This is not burger king you can not have it your way.

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GBOGEY
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by GBOGEY » Sat Dec 23, 2017 3:07 pm

That's an incredible deal - if I get it, $7500 whereas annual membership would be $15,000. Forget the cart fees. The only question is whether the club is in trouble? Why are they offering something so good? If for some reason the club isn't around for 5 years, you are hosed. But as long as it is around for at least 3 years you've come out ahead.

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DougE
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by DougE » Sat Dec 23, 2017 3:52 pm

GBOGEY wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 3:07 pm
That's an incredible deal - if I get it, $7500 whereas annual membership would be $15,000. Forget the cart fees. The only question is whether the club is in trouble? Why are they offering something so good? If for some reason the club isn't around for 5 years, you are hosed. But as long as it is around for at least 3 years you've come out ahead.
I questioned why they are trying to raise cash myself. They may be thinking of selling. I know for a fact that there are more than a few interested buyers who want to take the club a step further to a high-end resort-style course.It would be easy to do. The course itself is already considered one of the best around. But so far, the owner has not decided to sell. At least as of the last I knew. As I said, it is a top-shelf course to begin with and it definitely isn't losing money. It is also located in an area where condos would not be permitted. Zoning here for homes around the golf course and around my area is acre and a half or larger. I would certainly make sure my membership is firm no matter who the owner is. I am trying to schedule a sit down with the owner just after the 1st of the year, since he is away until then. He is aware of my interest, but he doesn't know that I have some proposals for him. I need some guarantees, in writing. At this point I need to wait until I can sit down with him. I'll let you know what happens next.

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bryan k
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by bryan k » Sun Dec 24, 2017 1:27 pm

Here is my take.

Debt is a tool. If used properly, debt should be used to make or save money.

If you were to put the $7,500 on your credit card and amortize if over the full five years of the membership at an interest rate of 19%, you would be looking at $195 a month for a total payment, when all is said and done, of $11,673.

If everything is on the up-and-up, this is a no-brainer even if you have to put it on your credit card. It pays to be cautious, though. I almost bought an annual membership at a local club a couple of years ago, and the course went under about three months later. They filed for chapter 11, so I would have been pretty much SOL.

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jev
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by jev » Sun Dec 24, 2017 2:52 pm

legitimatebeef wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 10:41 am
Are you people even considering the numbers? Douge is not some dead beat trying to live beyond means.
Someone willing to spend this type of money on a hobby without having the means available to back it up is taking a risk IMHO. I would suggest to find a cheaper course and not waste money on carts. But hey, that's just me.
90% of the game is mental, the other half is all in your head (Yogi)

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bryan k
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by bryan k » Tue Dec 26, 2017 7:43 pm

jev wrote:
Sun Dec 24, 2017 2:52 pm
legitimatebeef wrote:
Sat Dec 23, 2017 10:41 am
Are you people even considering the numbers? Douge is not some dead beat trying to live beyond means.
Someone willing to spend this type of money on a hobby without having the means available to back it up is taking a risk IMHO. I would suggest to find a cheaper course and not waste money on carts. But hey, that's just me.
I really, truly wish this was an option here in Phoenix.

I miss the $700 annual memberships at the municipal courses back home in Fargo.

Here in Phoenix, the cheapest membership you will find is in the $3,000 range for a crappy course with limited availability on tee times with range balls and carts extra. Both courses that I could find with an offer in this range are not walkable, and in the summer time, walking 18 holes when the temp is 115 can actually get to be kind of dangerous when you get into your 40s and beyond.

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Duke of Hazards
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by Duke of Hazards » Wed Dec 27, 2017 2:04 am

You'd be a fool not to do it, Doug, at the rate you play. Sounds like they need some short term cash since they're limiting it to 20 people. If you pass it up, you'll likely regret it. Hopefully, you've already signed the papers.

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jattruia
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by jattruia » Wed Jan 03, 2018 8:45 am

This sounds amazing. Any word yet?

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DougE
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Re: Membership opportunity at my club

Post by DougE » Wed Jan 03, 2018 8:57 am

Trying to meet with the owner this week to see if I can get some assurances and a one-time transferable option in case of major life change, like injury, job-driven relocation, etc. Should know something soon.

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