According to the American Resort Development Association, almost 10 million people in the USA own one or more timeshare products.
So, despite the bad rap that this vacation product often gets, it seems there must be something good about joining a timeshare scheme.
Keep reading to find out more about the benefits of a timeshare membership and some of the drawbacks.
Before you delve too deeply into your reading and become enthralled with the idea of endless affordable vacations in the sun, pay attention to this.
Buying a timeshare’s akin to purchasing a second home. It’s an expensive, ongoing financial responsibility, and in many cases, you’ll have to leave these responsibilities to your next of kin.
Most timeshare memberships are in perpetuity. That means they don’t expire when you pass away. Somebody’s got to pay for them forever.
As with vacation homes, there are ongoing costs for the upkeep of your vacation villa too. You can look at the costs of these DVC annual dues to get an idea of how much you’ll need to pay every year.
Although these instances are rare nowadays, there are still a few shady timeshare salesmen out there, so always make sure you know all the facts and costs involved before you sign anything.
The timeshare industry’s made massive strides to clean up its image of late, allowing you to enjoy all the benefits of vacationing with a timeshare, minus the headaches.
What Is a Timeshare?
When you buy a timeshare, you’re buying a portion of an existing vacation resort. The developer splits the cost of each villa or apartment across the 52 weeks of the year.
Each person that buys into the scheme pays only their portion of the purchase price and maintenance fees associated with that resort.
So, technically you’re only paying a portion of the cost but getting all the benefits of accommodation located in a sought-after vacation area. Each owner’s entitled to use their share of the accommodation according to the weeks they’ve paid for.
Often, you can sign over your use of the weeks to a third-party points organization in return for a specified number of points to use instead of your fixed week.
Since you don’t own the entire villa, it isn’t considered an asset and it’s sometimes difficult to get financing for your purchase price. That’s why most timeshare providers offer you the option of in-house financing.
Cost-Saving Benefits of a Timeshare
Despite the ongoing costs of owning a timeshare, you’ll still save over the long run when you choose this type of vacation product.
Annual increases in your timeshare dues pale in comparison to ever-escalating hotel costs.
Once you’ve paid off your initial purchase price for your timeshare membership, you’ll start to experience huge cost savings on the price of vacation accommodation.
When you own a vacation home, you’ll need to pay all the costs of maintenance and upkeep yourself. When something major goes wrong, you’ll need to pay the bill on your own.
You’ll need to hire someone to take care of the property and clean it as well as maintain the garden. If you live far from your vacation home, keeping it in good condition is a time-consuming chore.
In contrast, you split all the ongoing costs with 51 other owners and you never have to think about the daily upkeep of the property. When you arrive, everything’s spic and span and in its place.
Most timeshares offer flexible vacation options such as timeshare exchanges or points-based reservations. That means you can vacation anywhere across the world in accommodation that’s equal to your own.
You can also book a smaller villa than you own at a more luxurious property. If you’re heading overseas, you needn’t worry about unfavorable exchange rates increasing the cost of your accommodation.
Thanks to the huge numbers of timeshare owners worldwide, you’ll find abundant choices available across the globe when it comes to timeshare accommodation.
It’s especially important to make sure you book your accommodation timeously if you belong to a scheme with flexible arrival dates. The most popular times of the year always book out quickly.
You’ll Enjoy Unforgettable Vacations
Thanks to the flexibility of points bookings, you can visit a different location every year. Yet, you’re assured of similar standards wherever you go.
Timeshare accommodation’s usually spacious and family-friendly. You’ll have a kitchen in your villa for effortless entertaining, quick meals, and catering to fussy eaters. No more wasting money on expensive meals that your children don’t eat.
Most timeshare resorts offer abundant amenities. You can expect a swimming pool on-site, bars and restaurants, games rooms, and organized activities. Many resorts also offer daily activity programs to keep your children entertained.
You Can Make Money Out of a Timeshare
You can recoup some of the running costs associated with your timeshare by renting out your weeks or your points booking to someone else. Some timeshare owners even profit from these timeshare rentals, by planning carefully.
Again, if you’re using your timeshare this way, you must ensure you book well in advance. That gives you enough time to market your week successfully.
If you’re still undecided about whether to buy into a timeshare scheme or not, it’s a good idea to rent one of these timeshare options for your family to see what it’s like before you commit.
You Deserve a Break
Whether you decide to sign up and enjoy the benefits of a timeshare, opt for rentals, or decide to stick to your conventional vacations, one thing’s for sure.
We all need a change of scenery right now. So, if you’re looking for a place to make unforgettable vacation memories, check out our travel section for some great ideas.