An Amenities Agreement

My wife and I live in a great neighborhood. Built in the 60’s & 70’s Twin Lakes surrounds a private golf course. We love walking the relatively quiet streets that cross through a beautifully manicured golf course with it’s breath-taking views of Puget Sound and Mt Rainier. Most of the residents are not members of the course and have no golfing privileges or access to the club – expect on special occasions. That could change. The club has been losing members and money for several years and later this year will run out of cash. That could lead to a variety of scenarios including selling the course. Not an easy task in this economy. “Hey, buddy! Wanna buy a golf course?”  Why would anyone be interested in buying a course that has been losing money for years? Only one reason: the potential for development. Can you say, “Good-bye green space!”

I’m not a golfer and would guess that most of us who live in the development (over 1,200 homes) aren’t golfers either. I’m not much interested in becoming a member of the club just to have some place to hang out. (That’s what church is for, right?) But the golf course is making the homeowners an incredible deal that would pump some much needed cash-flow into their operation while extending to each of us extensive access to their amenities. Access (plus greens fees) to golf 12 times per year (no more than 2 times per month). Access to the pool, tennis courts, and driving range and access to the club house bar and restaurant. What is that worth? On the open market you might expect to pay $200/mo or more to become a limited member of a private club. If approved by the homeowners association these amenities would be made available to every homeowner for just $25/mo!

I don’t know how often we would eat at the club. We may never golf there. But to me the real advantage to this plan is that one day when we list our house for sale we will be able to make a statement that no one else in the area can make: limited access to the golf club and amenities included in the HOA dues. We have sold three homes over the past ten years. Each time we sold them in less than 10-days. We have an idea of what sets one property over another. Being able to show-off the perpetually cared-for greens and fairways and to offer these amenities for a total HOA fee of $52/mo is a real deal-maker. (Have you priced HOA fees lately? We have!)

We will be voting YES to keep Twin Lakes green!

5 thoughts on “An Amenities Agreement

  1. Jane Hill

    For anyone who honestly cannot pay the $25 for medical or financial needs, we certainly will PAY it for you. Many have volunteered to pay extra for a fund for those in need. This is also about “community” – a place to come together and have fun get together and get to know one another, help out the kids in the neighborhood – safe place for them to spend the summer off the streets, tutoring,etc. and yes, help those who are needy. So we will not only pay your $25, but also help you preserve your investment for your future.

  2. secondchair Post author

    A failed or shuttered golf course will cost all of us much, much more than than $25/mo in lost home values. If it’s a bailout it is a homeowners bailout to preserve our investments. And yes, I will pay your increased dues if you honestly can’t afford it. I want your home value to be protected, too.

  3. James Lamb

    Pastor Joe – can you pay our dues increase, too? kthanksbye

    So voting no. This is just another bailout of a business that’s in the process of failing.

  4. Jane Hill

    Wonder letter – You should ask the F.W. paper to print it. Thanks for your support of our neighborhood!!

  5. Billy Cannon

    What a deal!!! It costs that much and more to play one round on any public course. One of the reasons I gave up the game, too expensive and quite frankly I just don’t get what I feel y0u have to pay. Good deal Pastor Joe..Keep it!!! All your points are right on target.

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