People give a lot of reasons why they seek a timeshare exit. Why do you want to exit your timeshare?
We know why people buy timeshares. According to ARDA,
“Owning a timeshare is your ticket to better vacationing. This means an ever-expanding choice of accommodations, amenities, locations, pricing, use plans, and timeshare exchange. You can tailor vacations to meet your lifestyle needs and travel dreams at more than 5,000 resorts in almost 100 countries around the world.” Source: ARDA
That sounds pretty amazing. However, we work with so many people every day who seek to get out of their timeshare contract and are no longer interested in so-called “vacation ownership.” Our clients tell us over and over that they’re looking to exit their timeshare.
Timeshares can be a great fit for some of the people some of the time. But almost 8% of timeshare owners aren’t happy with their purchase. Here are some of the reasons people choose a timeshare exit.
Maintenance fees are the number one reason people give when looking to exit their timeshare agreement. And that’s not at all surprising. Here’s the truth about those fees your rep downplayed when you purchased.
Timeshare maintenance fees go up every year. What? That’s right. Every year. But prices rise on everything every year, too. So, why would you expect this to be any different? Well, you probably wouldn’t. But you’ll pay these maintenance fees whether you use the product or not. And you don’t have the same flexibility or choice around these increases. When your home maintenance fees rise, you can shop around. When timeshare maintenance fees rise, you just have to pay them.
And if you don’t pay them? Consequences vary by state, but you can be looking at creditors, harm to your credit score, or even foreclosure. Most timeshare owners prefer to solve the issues once and for all with a timeshare exit strategy.
Additionally, these increases are unpredictable. You can look at trends from past years to predict increases, but that’s no guarantee. Resorts can also levy additional assessments if large damages or issues occur.
With all of this, it’s no wonder maintenance fees are high on the list of reasons for timeshare exit.
There’s a lot to be said for consistency and memory. And there’s also a lot to be said for variety. Because timeshares last forever, they may outlast your desire to visit them.
For example, many people purchase timeshares when their kids are little. This makes a lot of sense. One major draw of timeshares is how they can create those year to year memories and experiences for our family. People with young kids are looking for amenities that will keep them entertained. Those interests will likely change as families grow. If you’re lucky, your resort will grow with you. If you’re not, you may find yourself dreaming of somewhere else.
Even if your resort is amazing, the world is vast! There are so many places to visit and learn about. In time, the same old location can start to feel both “same” and “old.” After the first 5 or 10 years, you may just want to seek out new horizons.
Lack of Flexibility
People also cite a lack of flexibility as a reason to exit their timeshare. Maybe now it seems very doable to go to the same place at the same time every year. Forever. But for most of us, our lives change especially over 10 or 20 years. The treasured vacation week may be impossible to make and difficult to switch.
A lack of flexibility is problematic for fixed week timeshare owners. Resorts are aware of this and do offer the ability to switch. Of course, this ability depends on availability. Without a week to switch to, you’re left with your same old week.
And that’s why some people seek to end their timeshare ownership. Your perfect vacation isn’t any fun without you!
Timeshare reps are notorious for high-pressure, hard sell techniques. And they keep on using them. Even though people know about them. Even though it’s really sketchy. Because they work. And because they work, a lot of people make a lot of bad decisions.
So it’s not a surprise that the next day, people want out. On the bright side, timeshare rescission laws exist. These “cooling off” periods are meant to protect consumers against the predatory sales practices of timeshare reps. They give consumers a set amount of time during which they can choose timeshare exit, often with no penalty.
On the dark side, the length and terms of rescission periods vary by state. And some are more generous than others. If you realize your mistake before the end of your rescission period, that’s great. But if you’re trying to get out of a timeshare in Florida, after 10 calendar days, you’re out of luck. (Well, you can still call us, but your rescission period is over.)
Health issues are another common reason for timeshare exit. Your health can impact your vacation in many ways. First, some people find themselves unable to travel at all either for the long or short-term. In other cases, the property itself may be inaccessible due to your changing health needs. Finally, sometimes the destination is no longer a fit for your health. A beach vacation even at an accessible resort may not make sense if you rely on a walker to get around.
If the health issues are temporary, then taking a year off is a viable option. You can even rent your timeshare or bank your points. But long-term, the ongoing cost of ownership for a timeshare that can’t accommodate you just doesn’t make sense.
Changing Financial Status
Because timeshares are forever, you’ll likely experience all kinds of things during the time you own your timeshare. You know, like the rest of your life. So, when you lose your job or face other hardships, you may find yourself unable to pay for even those “modest” timeshare fees.
When you’re living paycheck to paycheck, even the 2017 average fees of $81.83 per month is a lot. And that’s further complicated depending on your payment agreement. Maybe you can come up with the 80 dollars a month, but what about coming up with an annual thousand dollars in one go? All for vacation property you can no longer afford to visit or enjoy. It might be time to exit your timeshare.
Do It For the Children
Guess what a contract in perpetuity means? It means it never ends. Even death cannot stop a timeshare contract.
When you own a timeshare your children may inherit it. This is a tricky legal area and laws vary from state to state. It makes sense to inform yourself about the laws that affect your timeshare. Please note, these laws that govern your timeshare contract may be in a different state than the one you live in.
Make sure that your children want your timeshare. And if they don’t, take steps to make sure they won’t have to deal with it. For you, for them, the right option may be timeshare exit.
How Is This Any Different Than A Vacation Home?
But all of this is true of a vacation house, too, right? So, what’s the big deal? Well, the big deal is that unlike a vacation home or other vacation property that you own outright, timeshares don’t increase in value over time. And when you’re looking to move on, you may face difficulties.
In addition to the value not increasing over time, the value of your timeshare also plummets when your rescission period ends. Like driving your brand-new car off the lot, your timeshare value drops almost immediately. So, when you’re ready to get out of your timeshare, you are unlikely to get back your initial investment.
And let’s be clear: nobody calls us when they’re looking to get out of their vacation home. They call a realtor. Getting out of your vacation home is called “selling it.”
However, if you do want to start the timeshare exit process, we can help. We spend our days helping people exit for all kinds of reasons. Contact us today and take your vacations back!