A few years ago we wrote an article called, Timeshares: The Good The Bad and The Ugly. In the article we explained all of the good that can come from a timeshare, but cautioned the reader that there was more to timeshare ownership than what is represented by the salesman, and we explored these issues in detail.
Fast forward to today. As a timeshare owner at a great, well respected, resort in Vermont, I must admit we have outgrown the very premise for which we bought the timeshare – to spend time together as a family. The first trip up was awesome, the next really good, the third good, the fourth fair but by the fifth time we decided to go up we realized that there were better things to do with our time than ski. We enjoyed it, but the thrill of flying down the slopes at 40 miles an hour had lost its appeal – “been there, done that” set in with the family. Also, one or two rude staff members makes the future experiences unpalatable – and we had many over the years!
Now the timeshare is a financial weight that we must carry – its virtually impossible to sell.
What about a beach resort? Mexico, Hawaii, etc. Let me ask one fundamental question: how many locals hang on the beach in these wonderful locations? Not many. They’ve all “been there and done that.”
But Jonathan I want a beach get away!!!
If you’ve got the money, buy a beach front condo in an relatively cheap up and coming area instead (there are many). Find a good broker and rent it out when you’re not there. Use it when you retire, use it over the holidays, or use it as rental property. Most importantly, you will very likely be able to find a market for it when it comes time to sell.
Timeshare companies make their money by selling new inventory, which seems cheap because you are buying 1/52 of the property (multiply your purchase price x 52 and you’ll see their profit is ridiculous) – that’s why there are massive expanses of timeshare condominiums at each resort. No matter what they say (unless they put it in writing) they are unlikely resell yours for you.