A timeshare sounds like a great idea in theory. You don’t have to pay full price for a vacation home or other property, since you’ll be sharing with several other owners. Sure, there might be a schedule conflict between owners or you may have difficulty renting out the timeshare if you can’t use it one year, but that’s generally not at the forefront of many people’s minds at the beginning. However, looking to get rid of timeshare can often prove to be much more difficult than purchasing the timeshare was. Indeed, 85% of timeshare buyers say that they regret doing so for a variety of reasons that include intimidation, fear, confusion, distrust, and money. And a 2016 survey showed that over 65% of timeshare owners said one of the main reasons they were looking to get rid of timeshare was because the maintenance fees were too high and almost half said that maintenance fees generally were their primary reason for getting out.
Why Do Timeshares Sound So Appealing?
Timeshare salesmen often claim that a timeshare will save you money and be convenient. You’ll have a set place to vacation every year and it can even be an extra source of revenue if you can rent it out while you’re not using it. Buying a timeshare will keep you from having to shell out extra money due to inflation and you’ll split maintenance fees and costs with the other owners. However, it’s important to note that timeshare scams are abundant and might end up costing you money.
Timeshare salesmen will also say that the quality of the rooms available are much better than what you could get from a vacation rental or hotel. How much nicer would it be to go on vacation in a place you’re familiar with and have set up to your taste? On the other hand, it’s just your place — you’ll be sharing with other owners who all have their own style and taste.
Why Should You Stay Away From Timeshares?
Timeshares are not a good investment the way simply outright purchasing a vacation home would be. Selling a timeshare is much more difficult than purchasing and you might be out of luck if you’re looking to get rid of timeshare.
Many timeshare maintenance fees are exorbitant and you’re responsible for those as well as the mortgage payments. And it’s not just maintenance fees — there are a whole host of extra costs listed in the contract fine print, which many people don’t take the time to closely read over. Special assessments, utilities, and property taxes are all other costs that you may be likely have to take responsibility for.
Defaulting on any timeshare payments means that you’ll be looking at a foreclosure, which means your credit score will take a major hit and you may still have the lender coming after you for payments. There’s also no guarantee you’ll be able to rent out your timeshare and it may be more convenient and cheaper to simply find accommodations at a hotel or a resort if you do your homework.
Timeshare salesmen are notoriously tough on the sell and many people may feel pressured or hassled into purchasing a timeshare, which is no way to conduct business — and may end up saddling you with a property that is working to your disadvantage.
How to Get Rid of a Timeshare
If you’re looking to get rid of timeshare, you probably want to contact a timeshare lawyer for legal assistance in extricating yourself from the contract. Beware of timeshare resale scams. Try working with a real estate agent to put it on the market or see if the company will buy back the timeshare and cancel your contract. If all else fails, see if someone is willing to take it on for free and cover the maintenance fees.
Timeshares can be an expensive, unwanted hassle, even though they sound like a good idea at the time. If you find yourself with an unwanted timeshare, take steps towards getting rid of it and save yourself some money.