Tales from the Inside
Timeshare organizations are still booming and total sales have increased for an eighth straight year, and the amount of unhappy consumers posting in forums has risen right along with it. If you are considering purchasing a timeshare for nearly any reason other than doing lots of research and believing it will truly compliment your vacation habits, you are making a mistake. Doing your due diligence and understanding how the program works and what people that use it are saying about it is key in the purchase process.
Below are the 4 leading myths that convince people to purchase a timeshare property. Understanding the truth behind these myths could stop you from making a decision that could haunt you the rest of your life.
Myth #1: Timeshares are a Good Investment
If you fell for this one, don’t feel too badly. Lots of people have made the same mistake. The Sales Rep is making some convincing points about reselling or renting your property… you’re imagining yourself taking some great vacations AND making some money in the long run… it sounds like an easy decision. Then the years go by and you realize the dream you were sold was more of a nightmare.
Timeshare properties shouldn’t be purchased with hopes of financial profit. You are stuck with the maintenance fees whether you use the property or not and they are hard enough to give away for free, let alone sell for a profit.
Myth #2: Timeshares are Easy to Trade
In timeshares early days, you only had the option to go to the property you purchased. How boring. Since then, companies like RCI and Interval International have partnered with resorts to allow owners to exchange their properties with one-another. Great, so you should just be able to pop in and trade for where you want to go pretty easily, right? Wrong. You have to deal with requests, trade values, fees, and still may get denied for multiple locations before you end up having to settle for something available.
Myth #3: Timeshare Owners are Top Priority
Most owners are under the impression that they are considered first priority after purchasing. They get the best rooms, the best services, and the best perks. While most owners do enjoy several perks and benefits of their ownership, they are also shuffled down the line behind potential new owners and people that haven’t stayed at the property before. These are the type of people they are looking to impress, the ones who’s money they haven’t gotten yet. Who do you think they will try to take car of more, the people who already own, or the people who are signed up for their sales presentation tomorrow morning?
I have seen this in person. Owners will be booked in mediocre units while a portion of the top shelf units are saved for those attending presentations.
Myth #4: Traveling with Timeshare is Cheaper
Timeshare is represented as a way to increase the quality and ease planning your vacations, while saving money in the long run. It sounds like as wonderful concept, but unfortunately isn’t typically the case. Some people can take advantage of deals and excess inventory to get some great deals, but most people cant wait until 30 days before their trip to start planning. The typical timeshare traveler is paying $1,000+ for the timeshare ownership, $800+ in annual maintenance fees, plus additional fees for trading and memberships within RCI and Interval.
When you add up all of the associated costs, it usually would’ve been cheaper (and easier) to just book the trip yourself.
Conclusion: Timeshare Doesn’t Work for Most People
This probably isn’t breaking news to anyone, but with so many people still making purchases based on misinformation, it’s worth pointing out. The initial and ongoing costs, limited tradability and availability, along with the significant difficulty in reselling make Timeshares a bad idea for the vast majority of people.
Do you have a question you’d like me to answer? Awesome! Just leave your question in the comments and I will answer a different question at the end of every blog, or may choose to focus a whole blog on your topic!