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Time share Experience?
Posted by: Ammo
Date: May 07, 2006 12:27PM
A couple of years ago, my in-laws purchased a time share unit with Fairfield Resorts. Since then, they have bought 3 others. Although I don't know all the details, I am begining to get a little worried about the amount of money they are putting in to this (I think about $75K), and wonder if anyone here knows if this is a reasonable way to pay for vacations or is it just a rip-off?
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: Fritz
Date: May 07, 2006 12:47PM
resale value averages 20¢ on the dollar. if they use it alot over a number of years, it might be worth something to them. I just advised my mom recently not to by another, from Fairfield, as it was.

How much vacation could one get booking yourself for 75G?


If there are spelling issues, please pardon, Owen the cat is sitting on my keyboard.
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: AlphaDog
Date: May 07, 2006 01:22PM
I'm not a believer in time shares, either, but a friend bought one several years ago, and, for them, it was a good strategy. Prior to owning the timeshare, they simply didn't take vacations, unless it was some kind of trip to the Midwest for a family function. For them, owning a timeshare at a resort location made them feel obligated to use it. So, maybe the psychological aspect is worth something that can't be measured in dollars and cents.

Are your in-laws buying these simply as an investment strategy? If so, then you have a legitimate concern. If they're actually using them - and can afford the outlay, then maybe they know what they're doing. I've lost count of the number of timeshares an acquaintance owns, but they're always off to someplace!

Not my cup of tea, however.
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: bfd
Date: May 07, 2006 01:33PM
It's not a great "vacation" strategy, but for older folks it might make sense. For 75G they could take a world cruise - but it'd be a one time fling. 3 timeshares = 3 weeks of vacation a year at generally nice places. They're not probably going to pay off the entire 75G, so amortizing that over the rest of their lifetime is one metric you might use to determine "the value"…
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: troywellbuilt
Date: May 07, 2006 09:56PM
I can buy a time share for $5k for a week at a resort we go to every February. (off season) Maintenance is about $500 a year. Or I can rent a comparable condo for $700/week. Doesn't make sense for me.
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: samintx
Date: May 08, 2006 04:56AM
Cendant has a big push on their time shares starting at 47,000. I don't like timeshares but for some it might work only if you buy and don't do on time payments. They push "you can leave your timeshare in your will to your kids" but unless it is free and clear.....saddling your kids with possible payments or just dumping it so that aspect cuts no ice with me.
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: Ammo
Date: May 08, 2006 09:02AM
Thank you to all who responded to my post. It sounds like timeshares are legit . . . sort of, depending on your circumstances, etc.

To me, the burden of knowing I "have" to take a vacation somewhere every year kind of takes the fun out of it. When it comes to vacations, I like to be flexibile and spontaneous.
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: iaJim
Date: May 08, 2006 09:20AM
Well, you don't have to use it. My brother in law has bought two of them, and in the years that he has had them hasn't used them at all. He did send family friends on vacation using one of them.

They don't die with the owner, so the expense lives on after the owner.

I wouldn't buy one unless I was one of the people buying them at 20 cents on the dollar. That might be worth it.
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: Racer X
Date: May 08, 2006 11:26AM
Ours were purchased as foreclosures/resales, so we got them at a good price. One was resold to pay for a better one, and we made 50% profit on it. Not typical by any means.

There are lots of different programs/options/ways that they are administered, so you can't really compare that easily.

I use mine as a business tax write off, so it is a no brainer for me.

Racer X pays x dollars per year as maintenance fees. Racer X's Photography buys the weeks from Racer X at the cost of the maintenance fees. So Racer X makes no personal profit as rental income=expense, so he pays no extra taxes. And Racer X's Photography writes off the trip as stock photo expadition.

If you can make stuff like this work for you, it is a great opportunity.

We are trading our 1 bedroom in Cabo for a 3 bedroom townhouse in Orlando for our 10th anniversary, and having our friends meet us there and having a huge week-long party.

As for paying for it, you sure can't buy a car with a credit card, but you can buy a timeshare on several. I earned round trip tickets from the airmiles alone, and put the condos on 0% until paid off cards with balance transfers. Since we paid the condos off with the developer in under 30 days, we got 10% off the price, on top of them being resales, so we got one hell of a deal. This wasn't one of those "well, you got the better of us this time" kind of deals, it was a "for real" bargains.

The police have no duty to respond. See Castle Rock v. Gonzales, 545 U.S. 748 (2005) or Warren v. District of Columbia[1] (444 A.2d. 1, D.C. Ct. of Ap. 1981)

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/08/2006 11:28AM by Racer X.
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Re: Time share Experience?
Posted by: anonymouse1
Date: May 08, 2006 02:50PM
Also, with many timeshares, you can swap your time to use in other resorts, anywhere in the world.

For my 50th birthday, my parents gave me a week of their time in Aruba. My wife and I used it to go to Hawaii (Kauai) for a week. Ocean-front unit, magnificent trip.

I agree with all of the above-the trick is to buy in at a good price (which my parents did). As an alternative, it's easy to buy a week at a time on Ebay from folks who can't go when their week comes up. The trick is picking non-peak periods to go, because the demand is pretty high in the peak periods.

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