How To Sell Your Timeshare

If you find yourself with a beautiful timeshare going unused year-after-year, it might be time to cash out. However, as anyone who has even dabbled in the timeshare world knows, selling timeshares can be an incredibly frustrating, drawn-out process. From understanding your contract to obtaining the right paperwork to understanding pricing to finding trustworthy agents, the hassle involved in selling your timeshare can make the whole process seem not worth it. To help make your life a little easier, below are 4 simple steps you can follow to sell your timeshare stress-free.

Consider Other Options

Before you sell your timeshare, make sure the problem causing you to want to sell your timeshare can’t be solved another way. For example, if you don’t like your allotted time to visit your timeshare, you can almost always trade your week with someone else for a week that works better for you. Or, many timeshares allow you to accumulate points that you can use to vacation at different properties during the dates of your choosing.

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Understand Your Contract

Before you sell, it’s critical that you understand your timeshare’s contract top to bottom. Key details you should know and have ready include:

  • your timeshare’s location (including the country)
  • the name of your timeshare’s resort or developer
  • your timeshare’s size and description (number of bedrooms and baths)
  • any amenities included with your timeshare

In addition to the details above, you should understand who has the actual deed to your timeshare’s property. More specifically, even if you have the deed, clarify whether or not the deed is a “right to use” agreement. Often times, even if it says you have a deed, the physical deed itself will be held by your timeshare’s resort, developer, or a trust company. Before attempting to sell your timeshare, you should get a physical copy of the deed yourself. Also, determine what type of access you have to your timeshare. This might consist of a fixed week during the year, a floating week during a certain period, a time each year based on a points system, or a combination of these things. With point accumulation, it’s also worth checking with your timeshare’s resort to determine how you can transfer points to new owners.

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Determine How Much Your Timeshare Is Worth

Unfortunately, timeshares tend to devalue quite quickly. This means that you’re almost guaranteed to get less for selling your timeshare than what you originally paid when securing it in the first place. In some cases, timeshare owners and managers will let you in on recent selling prices, so it’s at least worth asking around. In other cases, you can use any of the sites below to help you determine your timeshare’s resale value:

Through these sites, find “sold” listings for timeshares with the same number of bedrooms, baths and similar square footage as your own. You can then base the value of your own timeshare off of this information. When pricing your timeshare, understand that you’re probably going to have to list your timeshare for a lower price than other listings for a quick turnaround or even a turnaround at all. If you simply want to sell as quickly as possible, you can even offer to cover closing costs or transfer fees. It’s also important to take into account whether your timeshare is paid in full or whether you’re still making mortgage payments. Sometimes the mortgage can be secured by the timeshare itself. The same applies to maintenance fees, incidental payments, HOA fees and any other costs associated with your timeshare. Not being caught up on all of these can result in you listing your timeshare as encumbered, which can make it very difficult to sell.

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Sell Your Timeshare

When you’ve finished preparing all of the above, there are a number of ways to actually go about selling your timeshare. These include:

  • Resale Companies
  • Agents
  • Yourself

Resale Companies

Before choosing a resale company to sell your timeshare for you, first double-check that they’re legit. According to veteran timeshare real estate agent Judi Kozlowski, a good rule of thumb when dealing with resale companies is to not work with anyone who wants more than $100 upfront. Real agents only collect their fees when your timeshare actually sells. Kozlowski also recommends avoiding resale companies who approach you by postcard or telephone. Finally, it’s worth researching potential companies by checking with the Better Business Bureau and the American Resort Development Association.

Agents

Another option is going through a real estate agent. As with resale companies, it’s up to you to do your own research on any agents you’re considering using. Start by asking the agents you’re considering how many timeshares they’ve sold and how long it took to sell those timeshares. This can give you an indication of how likely they are to sell your timeshare in a timely manner. Of course, avoid any agents that contact you by unsolicited phone calls. While agents can certainly make the selling process much easier, it’s also worth noting that many agents specializing in timeshares take a much larger commission than they do for home sales.

Yourself

For those not wanting to deal with a 3rd party, you can simply use the listing sites detailed above or social media to sell your timeshare yourself. Another tactic worth trying is placing ads in the area where your timeshare is located. This can attract locals who might want to be able to host out-of-town family members or friends and/or want to use the free recreation facilities, all while only having to pay the annual maintenance fee.

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How To Get The Best Timeshare Deals For Seniors

Owning a timeshare may be the perfect way for seniors to enjoy vacation destinations all across the world. That said, it’s important to be wary of potential pitfalls that may cause seniors to pay more than they should. To help seniors ease into their golden years, below are 3 tips to help secure a timeshare that fits their needs as affordably as possible.

Understand Your Ownership’s Responsibilities and Limitations

In most cases when you buy a timeshare in the U.S., you’ll get what’s called a “timeshare state” which allows you to rent, sell, exchange, and pass down to heirs your share of the property. However, outside of the U.S., you are usually only provided with “timeshare licenses” or “memberships”. These allow you to use the property for only as long as the contract permits and typically enforce other restrictions. Seniors should also know that signing a contract for a timeshare outside the U.S. means that you are not protected by U.S. laws.

More specifically, the types of timeshares available to seniors include:

  • Timeshare ownerships: Timeshare ownerships allow travelers to purchase one week of access per year. Timeshares are designed so that each unit has about 52 individual owners, each with access to the unit annually.
  • Fractional ownerships: Companies that sell fractional ownerships make units available to owners anywhere from 2 to 12 weeks per year. These properties are often more upscale than standard timeshare properties. Owners can choose how much stake they want in a property, whether that’s for 1/26 of a property or 1/13.
  • Variety of ownership plans: Some companies have properties that sell both timeshares and fractional ownerships and thus attract a broader base of clientele with different wants and needs.

Additionally, it’s worth noting if you’re buying an unfinished timeshare, the Federal Trade Commission recommends that money be placed in an escrow account registered to a local bank until the property is completed, and be sure to include a “non-performance” clause in the sales contract. This is to help protect you in the case that the timeshare developer goes bankrupt or defaults before the property and unit are finished. Finally, like any other owned property, you have to pay required maintenance fees and property taxes each year. Otherwise, the timeshare company has the ability to foreclose the property.

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Don’t Get Distracted By Extra Perks

Timeshare companies know that it’s almost always cheaper to buy from existing owners on listing sites than to buy properties from them. To counteract this, timeshare companies often offer closing incentives and other perks. However, you will almost always save more money by ignoring these perks and buying from an existing owner than to buy from a timeshare company with extra perks.

Fees that seniors can expect to pay when dealing with timeshares include:

  • Annual fees: Some timeshare companies charge timeshare owners annual fees to maintain ownership of their timeshare; these fees start at a fixed rate and often increase through the years of ownership.
  • Fee-free: Timeshare companies that are fee-free charge means owners owe nothing more than the cost of buying into the timeshare. This means that once the timeshare owner has purchased their right to use the property, they never have to pay the timeshare company again.
  • Maintenance fees: Timeshare owners often pay additional maintenance fees that increase every year to cover things like weather-related damage or damage caused by natural disasters.
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Choose a property that fits your travel needs

The main benefit of having a timeshare is that you’re able to trade your own timeshare for other timeshares in other destinations around the world. Therefore, you should know how to do that. Seniors that are part of a larger group or resort network can simply trade internally, otherwise, they’ll have to go through an exchange company such as RCI. Not only do exchange companies like RCI require you to pay additional membership and exchange fees, but they also don’t guarantee that you get the exchange you want. This is why seniors should prioritize timeshares that allow them to trade internally with other owners.

Seniors should also understand their timeshare’s schedule, which can include:

  • Fixed schedule: Fixed schedule timeshares allow owners to access their unit at a specific, fixed time each year; this means that for the length of their purchase, timeshare owners will return to their timeshare on the same dates annually.
  • Floating schedule: Timeshares with a floating schedule designate an amount of time a timeshare owner can access their timeshare each year, and they can choose the dates they want. This is a good choice for consumers who may be changing jobs or school situations and will want to vacation at a different time depending on the year.
  • Combinable time: Some timeshare companies allow customers to skip timeshare weeks, and then make up their vacation time during another year or at a later date. While these are less common, they do allow for travelers to skip a short vacation one year to then go on a much longer one the next year.

Schedules also depend on the destination restrictions related to your timeshare, which include:

  • One destination timeshare: A company with one destination for timeshares has only one location for owners to vacation.
  • Multi-destination timeshare: Some resort timeshare companies have a number of properties where owners can choose to vacation.
  • Points-based timeshares: Points-based timeshares have multiple locations that are each worth a certain level of points. Timeshare owners only have access to high-level properties after accumulating points from buying into properties or purchasing points from the company.
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5 Best Timeshare Deals

One of the more affordable ways to explore destinations around the world and everything they have to offer is through timeshares. However, finding a timeshare that fits your travel needs isn’t always easy. To help you out, below are 5 of the best timeshare deals that cater to a variety of different travel needs.

Casa Dorada Vacation Ownership

Enjoy the beautiful weather of Los Cabos, Mexico by staying at one of the many units provided by Casa Dorada. With so many units available, Casa Dorada timeshare resales are one of the most affordable timeshare deals around. Available suite types include junior suites, one-bedroom suites, two-bedroom suites, and penthouse suites. Most suites include flat-screen TVs, WiFi, furnished terraces, kitchenettes, air conditioning, and more. In more luxurious suites, you’ll find ocean-view jacuzzis, full kitchens, bars, and extravagant entertainment systems.

Outside of the suites themselves, resort amenities include:

  • 2 swimming pools
  • 4 restaurants and bars
  • Gelato shop
  • Coordinated children’s activities
  • Health spa
  • Clubhouse
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Marriott Vacation Ownership

You’re likely familiar with Marriott as a hotel chain, but they also offer luxury timeshare resorts through their Marriot Vacation Club. The biggest benefit of the Marriot Vacation Club is having access to destinations all around the world. The Marriott timeshares themselves consist of luxury villa or suite-style units and are considered deeded timeshares, which means that once you own your timeshare, it is yours to sell, rent, or pass on as you choose. Unlike traditional hotel stays, a membership with the Marriot Vacation Club also unlocks exclusive bonuses and extras that other guests may not have access to.

Marriot Vacation Club’s resort network inside the United States includes:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Massachusetts
  • Missouri
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • South Carolina
  • Utah
  • Virginia

Marriot Vacation Club’s resort network outside of the United States includes:

  • Aruba
  • France
  • Spain
  • Thailand
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Silverleaf Resorts

Silverleaf is a timeshare resort chain offering affordable family adventures and outdoor experiences in destinations all throughout the United States.  From Orlando to the Ozark Mountains, families can enjoy spacious lodging and country club-style amenities for the whole family usually only reserved for more luxurious resorts at an affordable price. Silverleaf timeshare owners also have the flexibility to exchange timeshares with Silverleaf’s network, making it easy to enjoy vacations in new locations every year. There is even the opportunity to explore destinations beyond Silverleaf’s network due to Silverleaf’s affiliation with RCI, the world’s largest timeshare exchange company.

That said, Silverleaf’s resort network includes:

  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Illinois
  • Massachusetts
  • Missouri
  • Texas
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Diamond Resorts International Timeshares

With over 400 resort destinations available worldwide, including the United States, Mexico, the Caribbean, Europe, Australia and more, Diamond Resorts is one of the best ways to travel the world for less. The benefits of owning or renting a timeshare with Diamond Resorts span beyond the timeshares themselves. Benefits also include access to discounts on flights, entertainment, and extended travel options.

Diamond’s resort network inside of the United States includes:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Missouri
  • Nevada
  • New Mexico
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Virginia

Diamond’s resort network outside of the United States includes:

  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Mexico
  • Spain
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SVC Timeshare Ownership

If you’re looking to explore the most beautiful destinations in North America, the Shell Vacations Club (SVC) might be just what you’re looking for. Whether you’re looking to enjoy the beaches of Hawaii, the powdery ski slopes of Canada, or kid-friendly attractions of Florida, you’re bound to find a Shell Vacations Club timeshare resort that fits your needs. You can buy or rent SVC timeshares, allowing you to experience resort life on a dime, and gain access to amenities like pools, activities for all ages, entertainment, and more. Owners are also allotted points based on their specific ownership detail that can be used for vacation perks like travel, golf services, spa services, and more.

SVC’s resort network inside of the United States includes:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Hawaii

SVC’s resort network outside of the United States includes:

  • Canada
  • Mexico
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