A timeshare is one option for vacation-goers looking for a dependable destination with the comforts of home. However, buyers can get caught in the sales spiel without considering all of the consequences. Here are a few reasons not to own a timeshare.
1. There’s hidden costs. The timeshare is bought either up-front or in mortgage payments. Those are the costs a salesman will emphasize. However, there are costs related to maintenance, property taxes, and utilities. That’s hundreds of dollars a year on top of the up-front price. Defaulting on payments can result in foreclosure and a big hit to the buyer’s credit.
2. Scheduling vacation time is not that easy. Salesman will make it sound like it is and like the property is just waiting for the owners to return. Instead, there are other owners scheduling vacations during peak times like holidays and school breaks. Unless the buyer purchases a fixed week and adheres to that strict schedule, their timeshare may not be ready for them.
3. It is not an investment. Timeshares normally do not gain value over time. If a buyer wants to sell later, there’s a very good chance they will lose money on the deal. They might not even gain money renting it out on missed weeks. Some timeshares don not allow renting or have strict rules for trading.
4. Timeshares are hard to get rid of. There are more people that want to sell their timeshares than people willing to buy one in a resale. The supply and demand does not favor the supplier and resellers often end up needing to hire professionals to even start timshare transfers.
5. It could have been cheaper and more convenient to rent a hotel. There’s the upfront costs, the maintenance fees, the traveling costs if it’s a fixed week during peak season, the money lost in a possible resale, and the money lost if the buyer doesn’t want to use the timeshare every year. It may be cheaper to pay the one-time costs of bundled resort and airfare.
Some buyers have been satisfied with their purchase after considering all of the extra fees and resale value, but some do get caught up in the sales pitch. When dreaming of your lifelong vacations, it’s important to consider where things might go wrong and whether a timeshare is worth it.