FORE!

I just researched why golfers often times yell the word “FORE” when they’re about to hit a golf ball.  It’s basically done as a warning to others to be on the lookout.  It’s also very appropriate to yell to people who own or who are looking to own in community associations that mandate golf course membership.

Remember last week that now infamous picture of Tiger Woods with his tooth knocked out?  Talk about a perfect analogy.  That’s exactly what is happening to the game of golf.  It is getting knocked out all over the country.  Golf courses are closing in record numbers.  There simply is no longer that much of an interest in the game.

Unfortunately for many, homes were sold in associations labeled as “golf course communities” where owners not only had to purchase their home, but also had to purchase expensive memberships in the golf course.  In effect, they were paying a mortgage, H.O.A. dues and golf club membership fees each month on top of mandatory real estate taxes and expensive homeowner insurance.

Even communities that were not originally designed and designated as golf course communities at some point thought it was a great idea to become one, and forced their owners to all of a sudden become members of a golf club in neighboring properties.  This is regardless of whether or not the individual homeowners played golf or whether or not they were suffering from physical disabilities which actually prevented them from playing golf.

Many courts struck down the association’s rights to enter into these forced golf course agreements where the original declaration of covenants and restrictions did not create a mandatory golf course membership on its owners.  In 2010, The Florida Legislature enacted a statute that basically upheld the rights of associations to become golf course communities, but only if 75% of the owners voted in favor of amending the governing documents in this regard.

Some owners, when in their 50s and 60s thought that living on a golf course was a fine idea because they were avid golfers.  That was no longer the case when they entered their 70s and 80s.  The bottom line is that what once may have seemed like a dream; living on the golf coursed has now turned into a nightmare for many.  Homes with mandatory golf course memberships have become much harder to sell and simply unaffordable to maintain.  In some scenarios, in order to get the noose off their neck, the actual golf course property is being sold to developers to construct…………..what else……… new homeowner associations.

Any of our readers ever live in a golf course community? Love it, hate it or somewhere in between?

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