Buying a home on a golf course comes with many benefits, including free membership to the club and beautiful surroundings. Like any other home and community, though, you need to make sure living there will be compatible with your needs and preferences. Here are two things you should check before putting in an offer on a home in a golf community.
The Real Size of the Backyard
The first thing that catches the eye of many buyers are the sprawling backyards that blend into the course. While it's often a relaxing view, it's also one that can be misleading. The fact that your backyard blends in seamlessly with the club grounds can make it appear that your yard is a lot bigger than it actually is. Thus, when you go to make changes to your home (e.g. put in a pool), you may be unpleasantly shocked to find out you don't as much space as you think.
When touring homes, have the seller mark where your backyard ends and the golf course begins, and be sure to take a picture of the area so you can refer to it later. If the seller isn't sure, you may be able to get the information from the company that runs the club or the builder if the developer is still erecting homes in the community. This will give you a realistic idea of the amount of space you're actually getting for the money you're spending and help you better plan any renovations you want to do.
HOA Restrictions on Walls and Netting
Another thing you want to check are the homeowner's association rules on walls and netting. One of the possible drawbacks of living on a golf course is that you may be subjected to errant balls landing in your yard or actually hitting your home. Not only can this be annoying, but it can cost you money in the form of damaged property and higher homeowners' insurance premiums.
You can protect your home and wallet by erecting either a net or wall that will block the balls. However, some homeowner's associations prohibit community members from erecting these things, because walls and nets detract from the visual appeal of the golf course, which can reduce the overall property value for the entire community.
It's important to know whether you'll be subject to this type of restrictions going in so you can make other arrangements to protect your home if you decide to move in. For instance, you can purchase windows made from safety glass that aren't as easy to break as regular windows.
For more tips on purchasing a house in a golf community or assistance with finding the right one for you, contact a real estate agent.