Whitetail Club Blog

Vacation Home Buying Tips

With the second home market trending upward, many people have begun to entertain the thought of owning a dream vacation home of their own. Whether in the mountains, near the water or even in the desert, vacation homes can offer more than just a refuge from the rush of daily life; they can provide lasting memories, offer a place to retire and even pay dividends as a rental property.

However, purchasing a second home is, of course, not something to take lightly. There are many important aspects that come into play when deciding on whether a vacation home is right for you and your family. The real estate experts at Forbes gathered a few key questions to ask yourself before making the big decision. For example:

Can you afford it? While buyers may be able to afford the actual price tag of the vacation home, there are other costs that need to be considered. A good rule of thumb is to budget at least one percent of the home’s purchase price for annual maintenance. So, if a vacation home cost is $500,000, the property owner should set aside $5,000 per year for common pop-up costs like plumbing repair or a new furnace. Also, buyers shouldn’t forget about insurance costs. Typically, a vacation home can cost about 20 percent more for insurance when compared to a primary residence.

Why are you buying? Is this an investment property or a place where you hope to see your grandchildren grow up? Are you hoping to rent the property or use it exclusively for your family? Do you think it will simply save you on those cumulative hotel costs? It’s important to examine your own logic and weigh out […]

Whitetail Club Welcomes Director of Sales

Joe_Carter_webAfter seeing unprecedented sales activity in the winter and spring seasons, we are pleased to welcome Joe Carter as Whitetail Club’s new director of real estate sales. A 20+-year veteran of luxury club operations and real estate sales of Whitetail’s Idaho luxury homes, Carter will join our team of sales professionals to continue the momentum through our peak summer season. In his role, he will oversee all sales activities as a designated broker as well as act as an active sales agent.

Carter began his career working in club operations for a variety of luxury clubs, including the prestigious Piedmont Driving Club, the Marietta Country Club and the High Point Country Club, where he cultivated a strong foundation for his real estate career.

His experience isn’t just limited to club operations, either. Carter has led a team of 10 sales agents managing more than 400 listings at Reynolds Plantation in Greensboro, Georgia. While leading his team, Carter negotiated 148 sales contracts totaling more than $80 million. Additionally, he is certified both as a community association manager and property owner association manager.

We can’t be more thrilled to work with Joe and look forward to many successful seasons with him taking the sales helm. Welcome to our team!

LINKS Magazine Features Whitetail Club

James Frank, editor of LINKS magazine, recently crossed into McCall, Idaho, while touring the Pacific Northwest, catching a glimpse of all the beauty and recreation that so many of us Whitetail Club members have come to love. While his stay was short, Frank did get a chance to see for himself why everyone keeps talking about the amazing golf experience offered here at Whitetail Club. He had much to say about our celebrated championship-style course in a detailed online article appropriately titled “Whitetail Club: A Mile-High Hub Of Activity.”

After a day on the links, Frank describes the award-winning 7,200-yard course as offering “spectacular views” that made it difficult for him to keep his head in the game. While the course, he said, isn’t too difficult, it does offer a great deal of movement from side to side along the base of the mountain and finishes with four challenging holes that run alongside, across and around water. Not surprisingly, he called the course “very playable,” “entertaining” and “a most enjoyable golf experience” — a few descriptions that we could easily agree with here at Whitetail Club.

Not only taken aback by the beauty and layout of the course, Frank was also impressed by the countless amenities and recreation available throughout our 1,300-acre community. From the variety of recreational choices, including tennis, a fitness center, spa and a full slate of activities, it appears Frank was thoroughly impressed with his visit here to Whitetail Club. But don’t take our word for it. Click here to read the full article yourself.

Real Estate Sales Continue to Rise

With summer in full bloom, once again we are reminded of how wonderful the four-season lifestyle is here at Whitetail Club. It appears our secret is getting out, too. Coming into the peak of sales season, our esteemed private golf club community has recorded more than $3.8 million in home sales during Q1, more than tripling last year’s numbers during the same time.

These numbers, along with the latest reports indicating a resurgence in the second home real estate market, certainly position Whitetail Club to post record-breaking home sales this year — another reminder of the growing market awareness of the value and year-round appeal McCall, Idaho offers.

Those who’ve discovered the exceptional lifestyle here in the heart of the Salmon River Mountains, just two hours north of Boise, know that it’s only a matter of time before word spreads about the selection of home sites still available. With golf, lake and mountain views, as well as a handful of richly appointed, custom-furnished new cabin homes, prospective buyers have a world of options that match the quality of living that so many Whitetail Club members have come to love.

With exclusive access to our private award-winning 7,200-yard, par-72 golf course to unfettered reign of our 14,000-square-foot indoor Tennis & Fitness Center and 6,000-square-foot Fish & Swim Club, Whitetail Club unquestionably offers a premier mountain-lake lifestyle that’s unlike anything else in the world.

To learn more about real estate opportunities at Whitetail, complete our online guest registry.

Q&A with Chef Steven Topple

Our executive chef, Steven Topple, is one busy guy. For the past year, Chef Topple has overseen the kitchens at both Whitetail Club’s Fish & Swim Club and Golf Grille as well as those at our sister property Shore Lodge, which include The Narrows, the Lake Grill, Narrows Grill, The Cove and the in-room dining menu. Oh, and he oversees a number of special events and is the current reigning champ of the Culinary King of the Mountain competition. Yet somehow, his inspiration and inventiveness never falter as he continues to create seasonally inspired menus that feature a diversity of local ingredients.

Chef Topple literally brings a “world of experience,” too. Born in the United Kingdom, he’s travelled the globe in search of creating the perfect dish. From London to Scotland to New York and now Idaho, Topple has trained with the finest chefs, including one of Britain’s best-known TV chefs, Brian Turner. His level of culinary artistry and passion for creating the finest cuisine is worthy of putting McCall on the map as a world-class food destination. Here’s a glimpse into the life of Chef Steven Topple:

Q: Did you always want to be a chef growing up?  What do you think you would have become, if not a chef?
A: I actually wanted to be airline pilot, but I am slightly colored blind, so I chose another career.

Q: What is the most gratifying part about being executive chef at Shore Lodge?
A: Anytime we complete an amazing day of service with all 5 restaurants. When we pull it all off despite being super busy and hosting a banquet at the same time – I can go home knowing everyone […]

Whitetail Club Announces Mountain Bike Trail System

As a leading private club in the Pacific Northwest, Whitetail Club is used to blazing trails but now we are taking it to a whole new level – and a literal one at that. We are thrilled to announce what is our soon to be newest club amenity: our own mountain bike trail system.

To design and create this epic trails, we have proudly teamed with one of the nation’s most experienced and respected companies: Park City-based Alpine Trails. They have been creating world-class mountain bike trails for 20 years including some of the most highly publicized mountain biking projects around the country including Deer Valley Resort, Glenwild Club and Utah’s Olympic Park.

For Whitetail Club, Alpine’s expert team will create nine awesome mountain biking trails covering 10 miles of diverse terrain within the Club’s grounds. Each of the trails affords interesting challenges and spectacular scenery. The Lower Traverse Tail, will average a 3% grade while the heart-pumping Whitetail Ladder will start at the Fish & Swim Club and will extend all the way to the ridge top, one mile away, and boasts an exhilarating 7% average grade.

The trail system is scheduled to be unveiled this fall, just in time for warm autumn days that are ideal for riding. Stay tuned for more information on this, and other exciting club amenities developing at Whitetail Club.

2014 Golf Season Tees Off

One of the most anticipated times of the year is finally here: it’s officially golf season at Whitetail Club.

The best golf course in Idaho (in our humble opinion, of course) opened for the season last weekend and the conditions could not have been any better. Our esteemed greenskeeper staff, lead by Superintendent Rick Mooney, did an exceptional job maintaining all 7,200 yards and beyond throughout the cold winter. With an extreme attention to detail, Rick and his team are working year-round to maintain smooth, consistent greens with some firmness to resist excessive ball markings and increased playability. Our club members enjoyed just that; taking to the course in the official opening day tournament and enjoying long days of leisure play daily, since.

As we look forward to the season ahead Whitetail Club members will enjoy participation in a number of regional pro-ams, club events, instructional classes, tournaments and much, much more on the course. Non-members, mark your calendars for August 28-30th for our annual Payette Cup, a couples tournament open to Whitetail members and Shore Lodge guests.

Here’s to another glorious season on the greens!

Turnkey Convenience

“Turnkey” homes continue to pique the interest of the public, especially on the West Coast and in vacation communities, according to a recent MSNBC article. But many potential homebuyers still don’t understand what “turnkey” really means and whether buying one is a right fit for them.

Also referred to as move-in ready homes, “turnkeys” are new properties that require no renovations or repairs. Basically, the house is ready to move into, with no extra costs. For home buyers who may not be sure as to whether a “turnkey” home is right for them, here is a closer look at some of the benefits:

Move-in Ready: The name says it all. Move-in ready homes are essentially waiting for you to move in. There’s no need to wait for construction delays, or make repairs. All you need to do is turn the key and start living.

Location: Most move-in ready homes usually are built in highly desirable locations such as high-end communities or near major metropolitan hubs. This means the property will maintain its resale value when the time comes to move on.

Features: Turnkey homes often come with a variety of builder upgrades. Buyers can take advantage of premium amenities like high-end flooring and cabinets or even upgraded appliances, depending on the builder.

At Whitetail Club, we currently offer two distinct move-in ready models from our Cabin Collection: The Selway and Clearwater Cabins. And while both cabin models offer the convenience of a move-in ready home, they also boast an array of premium custom features typically found only in custom homes.

Each model, perfectly sized between 2,600 and 3,100 square feet, features reclaimed trestle wood cabinets, carriage house garage doors, Presidential lifetime roofs, Anderson windows and luxuriously designed stone […]

Summer Recreation in McCall

While McCall, Idaho is a stunning destination year-round, it’s the summers that truly brings out the best of all our town has to offer. Every year between June and November, thousands flock from across the country, quickly discovering McCall packs more adventure per square mile than just about any other summer getaway in the U.S. Fortunately for the residents of Whitetail Club, one of the country’s top recreation spots is simply known as our backyard.

Generations of families have been coming to McCall for decades to enjoy endless activity and even better scenery right from their doorsteps. Just a few of the exciting adventures on our radars this season include:

Golfing: While the town is enjoying mornings in the mountains and weekends on the water (and yes, we will be too) the highlight of summer at Whitetail Club is the opening of our championship golf course. The 72-par beauty boasts 18 holes of scenic, yet challenging play designed by Roger Packard and Andy North. From leisurely afternoons on the greens to fierce competition in our many tournaments, it’s sure to be yet another awesome season.

Lake Activities: Enjoy long days of swimming, sailing, water-skiing, jet-skiing and canoeing across McCall’s crown jewel, Payette Lake. The glacially carved expanse boasts more than five thousand acres of water surrounded by a sandy beach that’s perfect for relaxing the day away. Whitetail members enjoy access to the Shore Lodge marina which boasts boat and equipment rentals alongside sailing lessons and guided cruises.

Mountain Biking: While nearby Brundage Mountain is known for some of the best skiing in Idaho, it doesn’t show any signs of slowing down after the snow melts. The adventures continue throughout the entire summer, as adrenaline-seekers […]

Demand for Luxury Homes Continues to Climb

Good news is on the horizon for vacation home owners. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) 2014 Investment and Vacation Home Buyers Survey, covering existing- and new-home transactions, shows vacation-home sales jumped nearly 30 percent to an estimated 717,000 in 2013 from 553,000 in 2012. And pointing back to July 2013, homes costing more than $1 million rose nearly 50 percent from the year before. Experts like NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun, expected the 2013 improvements as growth in equity markets continued to add confidence to high net-worth households, thus spurring an increase in sales in vacation homes.

And the trend doesn’t seem to be slowing down. With more and more Americans looking for luxury when traveling and many choosing vacation home rentals over hotels, it seems the rise in demand for vacation homes may continue throughout 2014.  Conde Nast Traveler writer Wendy Perrin, one of the most trusted travel writers of today, predicts “travelers will increasingly choose homes over hotels.”

The newest travel trends haven’t slipped pass travel giants like Expedia and Orbitz, who are taking notice and getting in on the action. According to Jay William, president and CEO of Villa Marketers, advanced software has made renting a vacation home just as easy as booking a hotel. A desire for luxury is not only limited to renters, either. According to Brad Hunter, chief economist and director of consulting at Metrostudy, via The New York Times, the luxury buyer currently is driving the housing market.

“And those who have strong incomes, secure jobs, their stock portfolio is doing well — they are able to buy whatever they want. And what they are buying is larger houses,” said Hunter.

Luxury home builders certainly are […]