I don't think you will find a health tested Golden for $1500. The going rate is more likely $2,000 - $3,000. I would expect a health tested with no titles on the parents to be at least $2000. I'm on the East Coast and just paid $2,500 two weeks ago. I also waited on a list for 9 months. Labs are in a similar price range. My son paid $2000 for a lab puppy last year from a friend of our family.
Keep in mind that if you get a cheaper puppy from a breeder that is skimping to stay within a budget you could spend $500 at the vet just to clear up worms, or worse....
I'm not seeing the original post anymore, but I'm in Texas and the general prices I saw for golden puppies from a good breeder who did at least the core four health tests on their dogs (hips and elbows tested after 24 months of age, heart, eyes yearly) was around $2,500.00.
I found a breeder that tests DNA as well as the core four and I'll be paying $2,500.00 for my puppy (minus taxes, which bring my price up to almost $2,800.00).
The first breeder I considered before I knew there needed to be more health tests only did preliminary hips and DNA and even they were charging $1,800.00.