When on vacation, it’s easy to let financial reality slip away. While that’s OK when shelling out for a nice meal or spa treatment, what happens if you do something really costly like purchase a timeshare? After returning to the real world, maintenance fees and monthly payments don’t seem so amazing. Whether you’re a new owner facing buyer’s remorse or a long time owner who no longer uses their property, what are the options when it’s time to get rid of a timeshare?
Selling a Timeshare
Obviously, getting money back for your investment is the best way to get rid of a timeshare, but that can be easier said than done. The problem with selling a timeshare is greater supply than demand, which can drive prices well below purchase amounts. If the property is up to date, in a prime location, and from a well known company like Marriott, Wyndham, or Hilton, it’s worth more. If your timeshare hasn’t been updated since the mid 90’s, it can be almost impossible to sell.
The Timeshare Users Group (TUG) recommends looking at properties that have recently sold in your complex, not those still on the market listed for sale. Asking more than the property is worth is probably the biggest mistake sellers can make. Although the numbers might be discouraging, having a realistic idea of what to expect from your timeshare sale is the first step in getting rid of it.
Next, decide if you want to list the unit yourself of use a company that specializes in timeshare sales. Obviously, it’s cheaper to do on your own, but if you don’t have the legal knowledge and marketing abilities needed to get the best possible price, paying for a service might be the better option. You do not need an appraisal to sell a timeshare, so don’t be fooled by brokers who include this fee as mandatory.
If you do decide to get help with a timeshare resale company, SellMyTimeshareNow.com has been in business for over a decade and gets way more offers from buyers than most other timeshare resellers. They also offer the ability to rent your timeshare each year to cover the cost of your maintenance fees, while you wait for the perfect buyer to come along.
Give it Away to Someone Willing to Accept Maintenance Fees
Sadly many timeshares sell for $1 or less. Why on earth would someone sell an expensive investment for so little? Many owners would rather give the unit away that continue to pay annual maintenance fees. If you can find someone who loves vacationing at your timeshare location, this could be a way to unload the property.
Timeshare Deedback to the Resort
If your timeshare is paid in full and there are no outstanding back taxes or fees, you can try a Timeshare Deedback. This involves contacting the appropriate person at the resort and giving back your weeks. Although the company does not have to accept your offer and they may charge a transfer fee, this could be a way to get out of your timeshare commitment. Make sure you pay any transfer fees only to the resort for this type of transaction.
Can I Donate My Timeshare to Charity?
Yes, but only if you can find a charity willing to accept it. Charities don’t accept timeshares to vacation. They need to be able to sell for a profit. If the unit was worth a profit, you probably wouldn’t be looking to donate it to charity.
What If I Stop Paying for My Timeshare?
If you stop paying for your timeshare, the resort will tack on penalties and fees, and the account will eventually be sent to collections. If you still don’t pay, the unit will go into foreclosure. Consider renting your unit or giving it away before letting it ruin your credit for a number of years.
While many timeshare owners love their properties, there are many others who can’t wait to be done with annual fees and being locked into a single vacation company. Although it can be hard to get rid of a timeshare, owners do have options. By knowing your vacation property’s worth and taking appropriate steps to sell or give away the timeshare, it’s possible to avoid further negative consequences of vacation ownership.