What To Know About Purchasing Time Shares

24 June 2015
 Categories: , Blog

In the quest for a vacation property, you may have come across real estate listings for timeshare properties. The prices on these types of properties can be very enticing to those in need of a getaway.  While timeshares can be great idea, they are not for everyone, and knowing what you are getting yourself into is vital.  Read on for more information about timeshares to see if they could be your vacation home solution.

What Is A Timeshare?

Normally a timeshare property is part of a condominium development and you are purchasing a set time, such as a certain two-week period in June, when the unit is yours. You may rent it out, use it yourself, or do nothing at all during that period. The rest of the time, the unit is used by other owners. This property is yours for life and you may sell your share or bequeath it to your heirs.

The upkeep, maintenance, cleaning and other expenses associated with the ownership are a separate expense on top of any mortgage payment and property taxes. A homeowner's association and/or a resort property management company oversees the day-to-day running of the property and maintains common areas such as parking lots, lobbies, pools etc.

Is It Really For You?

 Make sure to perform your due diligence on every aspect of timeshare ownership before you sign on the dotted line. Carefully compare the costs of the timeshare to the cost of a comparable short-term rental in the same area. Consider these important points:

1.   Check the reputation of the property.

  • Contact local real estate agents and the state Attorney General for complaints.
  • Read reviews about the property on popular travel-related review sites.
  • Go on-site and try to speak with other owners for their experiences there.

2  Carefully review the sales or purchase contract and make sure you understand it. Many timeshares are advertised with discounts if you buy immediately. In spite of this, have a real estate attorney look over the contract before signing it. Check the contract for a "cooling-off period" or rescission period as well.

3.  A timeshare could be perfect for you and your family's needs. It can provide an affordable way to enjoy a vacation home without the hassle and worry of upkeep. You can also check out timeshare exchange programs that allow you to trade your week for a week in another vacation destination.

Finally, you should be able to sell your timeshare when you wish, but keep in mind that timeshares do not make good investments and instead should be regarded as a vacation option. Be sure to have a real estate attorney like Michael Adler look over your paperwork and advise about this purchase.