When you decide to take golf lessons from a private instructor, you must not rush into it. Selecting a bad instructor can make all your precious money, time and efforts go in vain. You must do some research before selecting the instructor rather than finalizing the first person who shows willingness to teach you. You are required to make sure that the person you are selecting is a proven instructor. You should meet a few people who are taking instruction from the same instructor. Ask them how satisfied they are with the quality of the education provided by the instructor. You must also inquire about the punctuality. If he comes punctually but does not devote the entire time of the lessons in instructing and waste a considerable deal of time sitting idly, he is definitely not the perfect person for the job. You should also gain some knowledge about the cancellation policies (just in case).
You should not hesitate to request references from instructors to identify the best one among them. All the qualified instructors provide such references. In fact, some of them keep a sheet ready all the times and hand it over to people instantly when asked…it is a very common practice nowadays. You must also consider interviewing the instructor before signing up for lessons. Interacting with a person in person tells a lot about him/her.
If you are SERIOUS about your game make sure the instructor is giving you a plan, not just a lesson. We all know that golf is a difficult game and it generally takes more than one lesson or tip to make you a better golfer. A good instructor should ask you about your golf goals (break 100, get Division 1 scholarship, etc.) and work to design a plan specifically for YOU. This plan will include warm-up session, swing keys, drills, etc. It would also be nice to check-in with your instructor periodically to make sure you are doing everything correctly. It is easy in our technological world to quickly send your swing video to your instructor for analysis.
Good luck in your search!