People are looking for the “clubs within the club.” Is there a book club, cooking club, things like that. It’s all about the social programs, and for us at GLN, that’s where the matchmaking starts. Every club has golf, but the client wants to know “what else is there?” Knowing the importance of all the other factors is vital both to the couple doing the buying and to the clubs: The clubs have learned they need to work harder in areas that once weren’t so obvious. Look around, you see a lot of clubs and communities putting money into fitness centers, dining, and the physical plant.
WHAT IS THE FIRST THING SOMEONE SHOULD CONSIDER?
What I tell everyone, even if they’re a few years from moving, is to ask their financial advisor if they will have the resources to stay in a community not just five to eight years, but 20 or more years. People are living longer and healthier, but money is always the first concern. For most people, this will be the biggest buying decision of their lives. And we’ve still found that many people make a move and then move again in six months or so because they’ve made the wrong initial decision. That is, they move if they can get out of the first bad decision they made, which can be expensive. The clubs are looking at this from the other side. They know that members lose loyalty to a club after five or 10 years. They know that because we’ve studied loyalty and told them so. We’ve taught clubs that they can’t sit still, they have to adapt and change to keep their membership happy. And happiness is what it’s all about.
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