November 11, 2011

There are 16,000 golf courses in the US and fewer than 10 brokers to help investors trade them. We tracked down one: Links Capital's Chris Charnas, based in Chicago, who struck out on his own after eight years at Cushman & Wakefield's golf course practice group. Chris has brokered about 60 courses in his career and is listing five more—all of them distressed (as are most of the players on them). The average price has decreased from $6M four years ago to $3M, sometimes even lower for courses built in remote areas or associated with failed residential developments. So what will become of all the golf courses? Chris says some will be converted to residential, retail, or farmland, but most will be bought by investors who'll wait for the golf market to turn around.

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