Purchasing a timeshare can be very complicated. There are many details contained in the contract that will have a significant impact on your life for years to come. Not only will these details dictate your flexibility in taking advantage of your timeshare privileges, but they can also govern the length of time you’re bound to the timeshare and whether your heirs will inherit the property.
The financial stakes associated with timeshare ownership are very high. In addition to being responsible for a monthly mortgage for the property, you’ll be required to pay annual maintenance fees which rise by approximately 4% each year. You may also be responsible for taxes, utilities and other special assessment fees levied by the resort. Due to these high costs, it’s crucial that you fully understand the terms of your timeshare contract before moving forward with the purchase.
There are many different timeshare ownership options available. Make sure you do your research in order to avoid a situation where you come to regret your purchase.
There are essentially two different types of timeshare ownership agreements available. They both work differently and will have a significant impact on your long-term obligation, as well as a potential obligation owed by your heirs when you die.
With a deeded timeshare contract, you share ownership of the property with the other individuals who purchased the same timeshare unit. Your percentage of ownership will reflect the number of weeks you’ve purchased. For most people, they retain 1/52 ownership of the property for the right to use it one week each year.
Deeded timeshare ownership is considered a traditional real estate transaction in many ways. You’ll be required to purchase your percentage of the property, and you’ll be able to take out a mortgage if you’re unable to pay the entire purchase price upfront. In addition, you’ll receive an actual deed for your share of ownership in the property.
You’ll retain possession of the timeshare for the rest of your life unless you sell it. You’ll have the ability to rent your week to others or give the timeshare away to friends, family, or charitable organizations. In addition, when you die, your heirs will inherit the timeshare.
Once all units and weeks have been completely sold by the developer, an HOA will take over control of all resort operations. At this point, the HOA will be responsible for all maintenance and improvements on the resort, and they will have control of the amount your annual maintenance fees increase each year.
If you have a right to use (RTU) timeshare contract, you don’t actually own a portion of the property. Instead, you purchase the ability to use one or more of the resorts run by the developer for a specific amount of time each year. The terms of usage are spelled out in your timeshare contract.
You won’t receive a deed for the property, and you won’t own the timeshare in perpetuity as you would with a deeded timeshare. Instead, RTU timeshares typically contain a set time period (typically between 10 and 50 years), after which your right to use the property will expire and you’ll no longer have any financial obligations associated with the timeshare. In this regard, right to use timeshare contracts are much more like a long-term rental agreement than a real estate transaction.
While you may not be required to take out a mortgage in association with a RTU timeshare, you’ll still be responsible for the other costs associated with the property, including:
Right to use timeshares aren’t managed by an HOA. Instead, the resort will remain under the control of the developer once all units and weeks have been filled. After your RTU contract has expired, the developer will take back control of your share of the unit.
In addition to the terms of ownership (deeded vs. right to use), timeshare contracts are divided into different usage subtypes. Regardless of the ownership structure of your contract, your timeshare agreement will also be governed by one of the following systems. Your timeshare contract subtype will determine the rules associated with how you can use the property.
Fixed-week timeshares are the most traditional usage agreement. In this model, you have the right to use the unit at your home resort on the same week each year. These usage agreements are almost always associated with deeded contracts.
While you’ll have peace of mind in knowing that you’ll always have access to your timeshare on your specified week each year, fixed-week timeshare plans limit your flexibility regarding changing the time of year you travel, and you generally won’t be able to exchange your timeshare for a unit in a different resort run by the developer.
Floating-week timeshares provide you with a little more flexibility. In this model, you have a larger time window to schedule your week. In most instances, your timeshare purchase will fall under a specific season spanning a set range of weeks during the year. You’ll be able to choose any week during this season to visit the resort, subject to availability.
Floating-week timeshares are typically scheduled on a first come, first served basis. Therefore, you may find it challenging to secure your desired week if you own your timeshare during a popular season. For example, it may be extremely difficult to schedule your trip for the week between Christmas and New Years, since this interval aligns with school breaks.
Depending on the terms of your contract, you may be able to redeem your week at multiple resorts run by the developer, or you may be required to stay at your “home” resort each year.
Points club timeshare memberships have become an increasingly popular model in recent years. This option provides the greatest amount of flexibility regarding usage. When you buy your timeshare, you purchase a certain number of points which can be redeemed at one of the resort locations in your network on a first come, first served basis.
With a points club membership, you generally have the ability to stay at any of the resorts run by the developer. Disney Vacation Club, Wyndham, and Marriott are some of the most popular resorts offering points club memberships. In addition, you’ll have greater flexibility over the week you use your timeshare each year.
Because points are used as currency, amassing a larger number of points will provide you greater flexibility regarding your timeshare usage options. Some contracts may also allow you to roll unused points over to the following year. In general, the number of points required to use a specific resort on a specific week may vary from year to year based on demand.
Due to the complexities of timeshare contracts, it’s easy to find yourself in a situation where you don’t receive what you expected at the time you made the purchase. If you’re unhappy with your terms of usage or feel that your timeshare has become a burden, we can help. At Timeshare Termination Team, our team of expert advisors will work with you to safely, legally and permanently cancel your timeshare.
We understand that no two timeshare contracts are the same and as a result, it’s impossible to offer a one-size-fits-all solution to getting out of a timeshare. Our team will carefully review your contract in order to design a customized exit strategy that will deliver the freedom you desire. All of our solutions are attorney-based, and this has allowed us to achieve a 100% success rate with thousands of families just like you.
When you work with Timeshare Termination Team, you’ll benefit from our You First Approach™ which prioritizes your unique needs and goals throughout the process. As part of this approach, you’ll receive:
At Timeshare Termination Team, we believe you deserve to live life on your own terms. If you feel constrained by the limitations and financial burdens associated with your timeshare, we can help you regain freedom and flexibility in your life. Our attorney-based strategies will legally cancel your timeshare so that you have greater control over the way you vacation.
Please contact us today to schedule your free consultation. Find out how we can help you permanently get out of your timeshare.
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