Are Golf Courses in 55+ Communities Going Out of Style?

Golf courses are not becoming extinct in active adult communities any time soon. However, they are no longer the mainstay amenity of the early age-restricted community era.
fff
Golf courses are not becoming extinct in active adult communities any time soon. However, they are no longer the mainstay amenity of the early age-restricted community era.

Not long ago, the terms “active adult community” and “golf course community” were practically synonymous. Early active adult communities were modeled after the success of Del Webb’s original Sun City development and that usually meant a sprawling community with thousands of homes and a spectacular golf course. Today, trends are changing.

Several new active adult communities are still being built with their own golf courses. They are designed to have a more traditional country club feel, with golf being a focal point of the recreational activities. The golf courses benefit everyone, in the sense that they provide lovely scenery for the development.

Many homes offer views of emerald fairways or sparkling water features, and residents can also enjoy the course views while strolling along walking trails or making use of the amenities at the community clubhouse. Yet, those who rarely hit the links, or don’t play golf at all, are more interested in other community features.

Today’s active adult communities often boast a wide array of resort-style amenities. There are state-of-the-art fitness centers, luxurious swimming pools, varied sports courts, hobby and game rooms, art studios, outdoor amphitheaters, continuing education centers and much, and much more. In the largest communities, diversity appears to have become the main theme as developers strive to provide a variety of amenities. 

With this more balanced approach in mind, a private community golf course may use up too many resources on just one amenity. While active adult communities were once almost exclusively built on a large scale, with at least 1,000 rolling acres of land, a demand for more urban age-restricted communities has grown.

Many active adults want a mix of community amenities while still living in close proximity to urban centers. They value shopping, dining, live entertainment, cultural attractions and a thriving nightlife over a traditional country club setting. This often means that developers are limited to smaller patches of land, which simply do not have room for golf courses. Of course, active adult communities that are built near more urban or suburban areas are often developed close to existing public golf courses.

Residents can enjoy the amenities within their own communities as well as the activities found throughout the surrounding areas. Some golfers even prefer to have their choice of different local golf courses rather than a membership at just one club. From the developers’ point of view, there are financial reasons to build smaller active adult communities. Large, sprawling golf course communities take more time to plan and develop.

Many of the largest communities — which boast multiple golf courses, numerous clubhouses, and several thousand residences — take a decade or more to complete. Smaller, more intimate communities can be developed much more quickly offering developers a shorter return on investment.

Golf courses are certainly not becoming extinct in active adult communities any time soon. However, they are no longer the mainstay amenity of the early age-restricted community era. Today, active adults have more diversity when it comes to choosing a home among their peers. They can find rural, suburban and even urban active adult communities, some with golf courses, and some without.

Can you spot the $207,744 difference between these identical homes?

Financing is the difference!

Get the details in The 62+ Loan Homebuyers Guide.

55places Mortgage is a joint venture between Mutual of Omaha Mortgage and 55places.com.
Details here.

We're here to help! (800) 928-2055

Call us to speak with a customer service representative.

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Get Weekly Updates

I agree that 55places and its affiliates, partner providers or agents may call, text, or email me about my inquiry, which may be made with automated means. I understand that my consent is not a prerequisite for buying a property. I may revoke my consent at any time by contacting optout@55places.com. Message/data rates may apply. I also agree to 55places.com’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.

The Best Places to Snowbird in 2021

We’ve gathered 25 of the best places for snowbirds, including cities in Florida, Arizona, California, Texas, South Carolina, and Nevada. For each entry, we’ve also provided a list of recommended 55+ communities in the area. If you’re ready to find your own winter retreat this season, here are some of the best places to consider.

A group of 55+ adults discuss activities at adult communities.

Is Assisted Living or a 55+ Community Right for You?

As you weigh your choices, two of the ones to consider are assisted living and adult active communities. But how do you know which one is right for you? Let’s take a look at what each of them has to offer and how to pick the one that will meet your needs.

Closed up on a tiny wood home model on green grass with sunlight background.

This Month in Real Estate: A Housing Market Summary

The housing market continued to see a growing trend through the month of August. For 55+ homebuyers, there’s some competition still and some changes to look out for as the summer ends.

About 55places

We’re changing the way people 55 and older are searching for their perfect next place. With a national network of hand-selected real estate experts, plus comprehensive information, unbiased content, and on-the-go insight about thousands of communities across the country, we’re a trusted resource paving the way from here to home. Whether you’re interested in a low-maintenance single-level residence, an active lifestyle or age-qualified community, an intimate enclave, or anything in between, we can help you make your next move the best one yet.

Scroll to Top