Here’s the scenario: you’re approached by a timeshare company while you’re on vacation at your favorite holiday spot. They offer you a free dinner, or tickets to a show to attend a ”short” meeting about what they can offer you.
Let’s get one thing clear — this ”short” meeting is never brief. Essentially, it’s their chance to make an in-depth sales pitch to entice you to invest in a timeshare. While there’s nothing wrong with this, you have to wonder, are timeshares worth it?
If you don’t feel like attending the not-so-brief sales pitch, but want to learn more, check out the rest of this blog.
Before you make the commitment to invest in a timeshare, you must know what you’re getting into. First and foremost, a timeshare investment does not work like a property investment — it’s not the same thing.
When you invest in property (that you don’t live in), the goal is to make money and earn an income from renting it out, or selling it for a profit one day. Investing in a timeshare is not the same type of investment.
Let’s take a look at why:
- When you invest in a timeshare rental, you don’t actually own the property. You only own the right to use the property and its facilities
- You don’t have the same freedom/rights to rent out the property, make changes, or even resell it down the line
- Essentially, you’re buying the right to go on vacation at a specific property (that you can trade for different locations throughout the year)
- You have an obligation to pay for that vacation (the timeshare ownership), even if you stay at home and don’t go on vacation that year
There is one exception, known as a deeded timeshare ownership. However, this is not very common. You have real property ownership, but it’s shared with a collective of other timeshare owners. Even then, you don’t own 100 percent of the property, only a portion of it.
Even more important than all of the above is the timeshare cancellation policy. Before you make any type of investment, do your homework on how and when to opt out of your timeshare investment so that you’re not stuck with the annual fees for life!
When you attend a timeshare briefing, aka, the sales pitch, you’ll be inundated with reasons as to why you should make the investment. They’ll paint the perfect picture, but most of the time, it’s just a tad glamorized.
Here are some of the key benefits that really do make it worth it, though:
1. Your Annual Vacation, Sorted
In short, you don’t have to think about or research where you want to go for your annual family vacation. The hard work’s for you. All you have to do is book your flights, board the plane, and you’re there.
In an ideal world, your timeshare rental would be in a location you’d want to go back to every year — another top consideration to keep in mind. And if you (and your family) like predictability and stability, owning a timeshare rental is ideal for you.
Bear in mind that you can exchange your vacation rental for a different location throughout the year, though. But your rental must equate to or be of lesser value than an alternative timeshare deal. This will take additional time and planning, too.
2. You Don’t Have to Think About Property Maintenance
One of the best parts of owning a timeshare is that it’s stress-free. Unlike owning a rental property, you don’t have to worry about annual upkeep and the cost of maintenance. That’s all taken care of for you.
If you pay your annual dues/fees, you can simply arrive at your property and not have to worry about a thing. Whereas owning a vacation home or condo takes far more effort and will cost you more due to increasing property taxes, and other financial risks.
3. It’s a More Financially Viable Option
Not everyone has the available finances to purchase a rental property that they can also use as a vacation spot, even if it’s just once a year. In fact, the reality is that most people don’t have this type of disposable income until much later in life — if at all.
Because you’re not actually buying the property, just the rights to use it, you’ll pay significantly less to own a timeshare week versus owning and maintaining a vacation condo.
It’s worth noting, however, that the initial cost/price of timeshare ownership doesn’t include annual dues, exchange fees, and financing. All of which can add up significantly over the years.
It’s a well-known fact that many timeshare owners tend to opt out of ownership down the track because they want a change, or they can no longer afford the annual fees. This presents an excellent opportunity for those looking to invest in secondhand timeshare ownership.
In essence, this means you can acquire a timeshare directly from a previous owner, rather than a timeshare company, where you’ll pay full price. You can pay as little as 0-10 percent of the actual retail price, but you’ll still have to take on the annual fees.
Not only are timeshares a place that become familiar and homey over the years, but they also offer an abundance of space. Unlike other vacation condos, rentals, or hotel rooms that can feel cramped and uncomfortable after a week — especially if you’re used to a larger home.
Most timeshare rentals also offer all of the usual home amenities you use on a regular basis, plus more. This includes access to multiple swimming pools, a gym, hot tubs, direct beach access, restaurants, children’s clubs — the list goes on!
Expand Your General Knowledge
So, are timeshares worth it? The short answer is that a timeshare is only worth the investment if you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.
It’s important to know the difference between points and resort ownership, you can rent a timeshare before buying it, and it doesn’t have to cost you a small fortune in annual fees. Do your research!
If you want to expand your knowledge on topics like this and more, take some time to explore the rest of this site for your fix.