Golf course closures are continuing to decline, according to NGF study

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Continuing a trend that began in 2020, golf course closures have continued to decline, according to figures from the National Golf Foundation. Through June 2022, not quite 50 18-hole-equivalent courses closed across the country, a drop of 25% from the same time last year.

More than 90% of the total courses that closed were public daily-fee courses, which is another continuing trend, and over half of them were 9-hole courses. 75% had peak greens fees under $40. The NGF predicts that by year’s end, 95 18-HEQ will have closed, which would be a reduction of 66% since 2019, when closures were at their height. Some 40% of the courses that closed had already been scheduled to become residential or commercial properties.

NGF Course Closures

Assuming the end-of-year prediction is correct, less than one percent of courses will have closed. That number will never reach zero, given that financial struggles will always exist, and sometimes owners simply want to move on to other ventures. In the 10-year period between 1996 to 2005, 2,700 courses opened, while 500 courses closed. The NGF predicts that sometime in the next few years we will see the bottom of the curve as regards closures.

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