LIVING THE HIGH LIFE FOR LOW DOLLARS IN THE DESERT
Often I hear purchasers concerned about price when buying a desert home. But overall costs and value are just as important. That’s where the monthly Homeowner Association dues (HOA’s) matter. Amenities create lifestyle and lifestyle costs money. But getting a great lifestyle for a low fee isn’t impossible; you just have to know where to look. This article is going to outline four of my favorite developments and their low costs HOA’s .
Mountain Shadows offers a lot of amenities for the money. This condo association is located in South Palm Springs along the Eastern edge of the city and is beautifully nestled in the picturesque links of the Palm Springs Municipal Golf course. The development itself is well maintained and has multiple swimming pools, Jacuzzis, and two tennis courts. But the best part is that the Golf Course is maintained by the city and is available to the general public. So, especially if you own one of the many condo’s th\at sits on a fairway, you get all the benefits of a golf country club without having to pay for it. The HOA’s in Mountain Shadows run just under $300 a month.
Desert Village in Rancho Mirage is a small condominium association located on The Veldt where it meets Bob Hope drive. This development is a quaint collection of smaller condos that have adequate amenities of a couple of nice pools and a single tennis court. The best thing about owning here is the location. Directly across the street from Desert Village is The River shopping and entertainment center and the Las Palmas shopping center. What this means to owners here is that you can enjoy a luxury resort coupled with a city lifestyle: so after lounging around the pool all day, you can walk across the street and catch dinner and a movie, browse a book store and grab a coffee, or go shopping for groceries without hopping in a car. And your monthly dues are only about $275.
Oasis Country Club in East Palm Desert is a best value for a true golf country club. These nicely appointed 1, 2 and 3 bedroom condos populate the links of this public course for only about $450 a month. But here you have a deluxe clubhouse, a social club, a pro-shop, restaurant and bar – all on property and behind guarded gates. But since the golf course is operated as a public course, the costs are miniscule to the homeowners and you don’t have to get a membership to play. Often times these sorts of amenities will demand HOA’s for $1000’s or $10,000’s annually or more. Oasis is still relatively close to shopping, movies, and restaurants and the views of the mountains and golf course are breathtaking.
But the very best value for a true golf resort is Indian Palms Country Club down in Indio. IPCC is one of the oldest country clubs in the desert, yet in the past 20 years the development there has nearly completely filled the resort with nice condos, homes a clubhouse and even a hotel. The amenities here are tremendous. The gym is first class. It’s filled with machines, nautilus and free weights. Plus it has aerobics, tai chi, and other workout classes. There’s a great restaurant on property that even serves Prime Rib on the weekends and a social scene that includes periodical golf tournaments. Because of the property’s age, the golf course is wide and well grown in; creating excellent views of the surrounding mountains. There are lots of pools scattered around and a semi-pro sport tennis facility with bleacher seating. And many of the homes even have their own private pool and Jacuzzi. There are multiple Homeowner Associations within the development depending upon your location, so the HOA’s will vary. There’s a Master Association which is only about $65 a month that covers the gate guarded entry and the main clubhouse. Then you’ll have a secondary association fee which varies anywhere from $160 to $340.
So, with these four developments in mind, you can now compare wherever you are looking at against these best values when looking to purchase a home or condo. Price is important. But just as important – if not more – are your monthly dues and what amenities you get to enjoy for your dollars.