Life on the Links

If you're a golfer (and more Canadians are than in other countries), you've got one more reason to live next to a golf course.

You can expect higher home values with a house located adjacent to a golf course - compared to similar homes that are not - according to a National Allied Golf Association study released this month.

The Canadian Golf Economic Impact Study is the first comprehensive, independent assessment of the Canadian golf industry's economic impact, conducted by Strategic Networks Group (SNG).

"Amenity Migrants"

While no housing development or neighbourhood is recession-proof,  homes in golf course communities are doing relatively well even in the last year - particularly in the Greater Toronto Area.

That's largely due to the huge Baby Boomer cohort starting to retire and investing their substantial disposable income into residences with access to recreational and/or natural resources. The Boomers are "amenity migrants" - as coined by Guelph landscape architecture company, Stempski Kelly Associates - moving to where their sport or other passion is the most convenient to practice.

About 70 million rounds of golf were played in Canada in 2008, says SNG. IPSOS Reid estimates there are 6 million Canadian golfers.

Some Like it Green

However, you don't have to be a golfer to choose a fairway for your backyard. Apparently, many Canadians buy homes on a golf course not because of the sport, but because they appreciate manicured, open green spaces, according to a recent article in The Toronto Star.

Although some Baby Boomers are retiring to become snowbirds in southern U.S. golf communities, there is no shortage of golf course home developments in Canada, including such hot spots as:

  • The Rise, a new Fred Couples golf course community in Okanagan, BC
  • Rivergrass, a golf course community located within the Blue Mountain Village near Collingwood, ON, including access to ski slopes

Pay for Proximity to Famous Course Architecture

Longitudes Group LLC, a market research firm that analyzes the economics of golf and fitness, including in Canada, found that, between 2002 - 2007, homes built on Pete Dye-designed golf courses outperformed other homes located in the same region by 60% (followed by architects Fazio, Palmer, Trent Jones Jr., and Nicklaus).

As for any downsides in being a homeowner adjacent to a golf course, there are some, naturally, such as: A lack of privacy or quiet as a result of the chattering, ever-present foursomes and the hum of their golf carts, and the hazard of getting whacked by a soaring golf ball as you enjoy a cocktail on your backyard deck.

Got stories about living on the links? Leave them below!

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