Why do golf courses lose money?

Those business owners have to overcome two challenges of taxpayer-funded golf courses. First of all, they have to subsidize the municipal course through their taxes. Secondly, they have to compete against the artificially low prices offered by municipal courses. Cities exempt municipal golf courses from property taxes and subsidize their losses, a combination that allows them to charge even lower prices than private courses.

That's at least one of the reasons golf courses across the country have been closing in the past decade. It wasn't that all golf courses were losing money, but that land was more valuable for homes, condominiums, and business parks. Yes, many golf courses have lost money in recent years and only had to close or sell to get out of financial losses. But some golf course owners only see more money in selling their land than trying to sell tee times.

Many golf courses have been abandoned during economic crises due to the high cost of keeping them alive and thriving. That's a lesson golf courses across the country, including those in the Coachella Valley, are learning in recent years. Another thing is that a golf course is reaching break-even or even making a profit only to finally understand that the land occupied by the golf course is worth much more than the benefit the course could be making. Trump notably bought his first golf property, the Trump International Golf Club in Palm Beach, in 1999.During a recent trip to North Carolina, where the PGA Championship was played last week, a round of golf with some friends revealed interesting news about the course being played and how it is possible that Recent trends in golf are not changing as much as optimists would like to think.

Major golf courses and prestigious golf clubs such as Pebble Beach, Bandon Dunes, Los Angeles Country Club and many others continue to be in high demand. However, the most glaring error is the location of the two-employee municipal golf store at Jones Golf Course on Fruitland Blvd. After more than a decade of declining demand, the golf course industry has returned in the past two years thanks, in part, to the pandemic, as golf is one of the few safe sports under social distancing guidelines. Trump “puts more money into his golf courses than anyone he knows,” said Mike Hatch, a golf consultant and owner of multiple courses in Virginia.

There may be some marketing adjustments, such as organizing more events for specific groups, from minor league golf tours, college students, women's golf associations, bachelor parties, or corporate events. Doing a full conversion (completely eliminating the golf course) will often result in landlords bordering the golf course going crazy, so in addition to dealing with zoning laws and potential conversion moratoriums, broad political aptitude is required. As golf seems to have slowly stabilized with declines in total players and rounds played, there are golf courses that are making a profit in the desert and across the country. Looking at a well-kept golf course creates a sense of peace until you play challenging golf.

Brittany Gavula
Brittany Gavula

Typical problem solver. Infuriatingly humble food geek. General internet practitioner. Incurable web lover. Devoted beer buff.