According to the American Resort Development Association, the timeshare industry in the United States sports a value of $10.5 billion. ARDA notes that as of 2019 there were more than 1,500 timeshare resorts, with over 200,000 units, in the U.S. Also, 13 percent of timeshare owners make $100,000 or more.
Having a Vacation Ownership, also known as a timeshare, means you purchase a “right to use” certain condos on a resort property. Timeshare companies either use a point system or fixed weeks for an owner’s use. These resorts often have some sort of rental program as well, which resulted in $2.5 billion in revenue in recent years.
Finding the right timeshare to fit your lifestyle and vacation plans requires research. Here are five common timeshare purchasing mistakes and how to avoid them.
1. No Research
Not doing enough research is perhaps the biggest of the timeshare purchasing mistakes. Before entering into any agreement, even if you’re pre-approved for timeshares, you must ensure it’s something you want.
You’ll need to know the expectations for the resort, be it a points-based timeshare or not. Read all the fine print in the contract. Also, look up reviews of the providers for these timeshares and the different locations.
2. Impulse Buying
Another common timeshare purchasing mistake is impulse buying. The presentation for most types of timeshares can sweep anyone off their feet. They draw you in with the delightful possibilities and beautiful pictures.
But considering the financial commitment, this is not a decision to be rushed. Comparing timeshare prices is always a good exercise. Every property and each market is different.
You need to understand the commitment you’re making, and it’s always best to take some time after the presentation to think it over. If this is the case for you and you want to cancel your timeshare that you bought impulsively, you can check out this blog post: how to cancel my bluegreen timeshare.
It’s common for hopeful owners to get wrapped up in the emotional excitement and potential of a timeshare property. Factor the vacation ownership into your monthly budget before making any commitments. Also, be sure you’re purchasing only the amount of points you need to save some money.
The HGVC points chart is a useful research tool. It helps when you’re purchasing a timeshare by showing how many points you’ll need for each Hilton Grand Vacations Club resort. This helps you plan your annual vacations to fit your lifestyle.
4. Don’t Forget the Maintenance Fees
Forgetting the property maintenance fees can be among the most costly timeshare purchasing mistakes. Even if you know when you’re going to use your timeshare, it’s important to have a plan for the off-season.
These fees will be due whether you bought the timeshare on the resale market or if you purchased directly from the resort. They’re also due if you’re part of a points-based timeshare. Factor these fees into your monthly budget.
5. Not Being Flexible
The idea of a permanent Vacation Ownership can be very appealing. But if the timeshare isn’t hosting every trip, the cost can climb quickly. The maintenance fees alone might keep you from visiting other resorts.
If the timeshare locks you into a specific week, you may eventually grow tired of the same vacation year after year. It’s important to know if your timeshare provides access to additional properties or has agreements with affiliated resorts.
Solutions for Your Timeshare Purchasing Mistakes
Timeshare contracts include specific clauses and stipulations, and not reading carefully often leads to timeshare purchasing mistakes. Many of these problems are easy to address. But it’s very important to do your research and ask questions before signing anything.
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